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Rendering: Courtesy of OCTA
Rendering: Courtesy of OCTA

By Allison Jarrell

The new northbound Interstate 5 loop on-ramp opened Feb. 27, and the existing on-ramp is set to close for improvements.

Motorists heading eastbound across the Ortega Highway bridge will turn right and loop under the bridge to get onto northbound I-5. Motorists coming westbound toward the bridge will turn left onto the new ramp to get onto northbound I-5. This new configuration will eliminate one of the two signalized intersections on the east side of the Ortega Highway bridge, and is expected to significantly alleviate traffic congestion.

Full closures of I-5 in San Juan Capistrano and the Ortega Highway bridge are scheduled for midnight to 6 a.m. on March 7, 8, 14 and 15. The closures will allow falsework to be installed for the new bridge on the north side of Ortega.

Southbound I-5 and the Ortega Highway bridge will be closed on Saturday, March 7, and Saturday, March 14. Northbound I-5 and the Ortega Highway bridge will be closed on Sunday, March 8, and Sunday, March 15.

Motorists traveling north on I-5 will be diverted onto the Ortega Highway off-ramp and directed to turn right onto Ortega Highway, left onto Rancho Viejo Road and left onto Junipero Serra Road to re-access the northbound I-5. Those traveling south on I-5 will be diverted onto the Ortega Highway off-ramp and back onto southbound I-5 via the Ortega Highway on-ramp. To drive into San Juan Capistrano from I-5, commuters must use the Camino Capistrano or Junipero Serra exits.

For more information on future construction, visit

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