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Boom! Freeway Pile Driving Starts Up Again

"Loud and disruptive" activity on the eastbound 22 Freeway to northbound 405 Freeway Connector will continue weekdays for months.

That booming sound ain't the local military bases. 

Pile driving resumed this week as a part of the transportation plan to link up the carpool lanes of the 605, 405 and 22 freeways, as well as expand a local bridge to handle new lanes.

During the next several months, construction will continue 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays on the eastbound 22 Freeway to northbound I-405 connector, as well as on Seal Beach Boulevard Bridge.

“Please be advised this activity may be loud and disruptive because of the vibration and pounding,” said a statement from the Orange County Transportation Authority.

In addition, more pile driving will begin Jan. 21 as crews construct the new 22 and 405 freeway carpool connectors.

Pile driving is a common method of constructing bridge foundations. To support the bridge, steel or concrete beams are driven into the ground by a large hammer mounted on a crane, until they reach a hard layer of earth beneath the foundation.

The work is part of the $277 million West County Connectors project aimed at improving traffic flow by directly connecting carpool lanes on the 405, 605 and 22 Freeways.

In addition, a second carpool lane will be constructed on the 405 between the 22 and the 605.

The 6-mile project affects the cities of Long Beach, Garden Grove, Westminster, Seal Beach, Los Alamitos, and the community of Rossmoor.

Due to construction, the bridge is currently only one lane south and one lane north with a median lane to be used by emergency vehicles.

“Once work on the west half of the bridge is completed, the bridge will be restored to two lanes in each direction as crews work on the east half of the bridge,” said Laura Scheper, OCTA spokesperson, in a written statement. “When construction on the bridge is completed, there will be four northbound and three southbound lanes."

Scheper added that OCTA staff expect the bridge to be completed sometime Summer 2014

For more information about the West County Connectors project, visit www.octa.net/wcc or email a representative at WCCProject@octa.net.

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