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Popular bridge reopens in Chula Vista, reconnects a divided neighborhood

Palomar Street bridge was closed for three years
Posted at 4:27 PM, Sep 05, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-05 19:45:31-04

CHULA VISTA, Calif. - Commuters now have an easier time traveling to, from and through Chula Vista, thanks to the reopening of the Palomar Street Bridge.

Caltrans closed the bridge in 2013 while the Palomar Street Transit Station was built.

The transit station is part of the $1.1 billion I-805 South Express Lanes Project. The Palomar Street Bridge was rebuilt to include direct access ramps onto I-805, but those ramps will not open for a few weeks, according to Caltrans.

However, one lane in each direction on the bridge was reopened. The bridge reconnects a community that was separated when the bridge was closed.

"Time is the most important thing. You can never get time back," said Philina Phillips, who moved to the Chula Vista neighborhood after the bridge was closed.

Philips didn't realize how the bridge would save her time once it reopened.

"Especially getting to the hospital to take my mom to her doctor's appointments," she said.

Phillips lives on the west side of I-805, and with the bridge, Sharp Chula Vista is a direct shot. Before the bridge reopened, it took Phillips roughly 10 minutes.

The direct access ramps are also expected to take traffic off of surface streets in Chula Vista and alleviate traffic on I-805.