A new interchange on I-215 will help stimulate economic development around March Air Reserve Base and help relieve traffic congestion for 43,000 motorists who travel in the area along Van Buren Boulevard each day. The interchange and a new six-lane Van Buren bridge overcrossing will help improve safety for drivers who use the boulevard today and for the projected 72,000 motorists expected to travel the route each day in 2035.
“This project will facilitate the growth and expansion of the Meridian Business Park and March Health Care Campus, which is expected to create 30,000 new jobs once development is complete,” Supervisor Kevin Jeffries said.
Although some freeway and bridge lanes will be closed through next week, the bridge is open and all traffic signals should be fully operational this week. Riverside Construction began building the $30 million interchange project in July 2012. The new interchange provides access not only for residents but also those visiting the Riverside National Cemetery, the March Air Museum, the Meridian Business Park, and the March Health Care Campus.
“The county was able to secure approximately $9 million in state Trade Corridor Improvement funds for the interchange because of the enormous amount of trade that the March re-use project will bring to the county,” Supervisor Marion Ashley said. “This project is vital to luring new business to the area.”
The project includes aesthetic features that highlight the history of aviation. The area within the new loop ramp includes a rock design that represents the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds in flight with vapor trails. In tribute to the national cemetery, military crests were placed on concrete structures that are components of the interchange.
For more information, contact Patricia Romo with the Riverside County Transportation Department at (951) 955-6740.