SACRAMENTO - The full closure of Highway 50 set for May 11 is now a week away. Caltrans said that the contractor working on the project, C.C. Meyers Inc could still shift the date slightly if needed due to weather conditions.
The closure will last two weeks in both directions east and westbound at Echo Summit. Caltrans says the work will be to shore up the rock wall barrier. There will be a detour in place starting at the Highway 50 Power Inn exit that takes you through Jackson among other ares and adds about 35 miles to the travel and an estimated additional 45 minutes to total drive time.
Here are some detours recommended when the closure is in effect from Caltrans:
From Sacramento: Exit at Power Inn Road and take State Route 16 east to State Route 49 south, at State Route 88 in Jackson, turn left (east). Take that to State Route 89 and turn left again (north), and follow it back to U.S. Highway 50 in South Lake Tahoe.
From Placerville: Exit at Missouri Flat Road and take State Route 49 south. Follow it to State Route 88 in Jackson and turn left (east), At State Route 89 turn left (north) and follow it back to U.S. Highway 50 in South Lake Tahoe.
Motorists coming through the Stockton area can exit State Route 99 as usual at State Route 88 east, continuing onto State Route 88/49. In Jackson, turn left to continue on State Route 88 east. At State Route 89 turn left (north) and follow it to U.S. Highway 50 in South Lake Tahoe.
One complication is the closure continues during the AMGEN Tour. Stage One begins Sunday May 15th in Tahoe around the lake. Caltrans says they anticipate there will be thousands of additional crowds there to watch the race but the closure will still remain if work is already underway.
Caltrans tells News10 that Highway 50 will be open for Memorial Day weekend but some lane closures may be in effect for several weeks after the highway re-opens.
News10's Melissa Crowley says Caltrans also shared the highway around Lake Tahoe will be open during the 2011 AMGEN Tour of California. But getting there may be a challenge with the 50 closure. You will be able to drive on Highway 50 past Placerville and to Sierra at Tahoe before the full closure begins.
For details on the project you can check www.way2tahoe.com and also download our News10 Traffic App.