Workers broke ground today on a major road project that officials expect will provide south Orange County an alternative to the Santa Ana (5) Freeway.
In December, Orange County supervisors approved the $72-million La Pata Extension project.
Sukut Construction will do the work in three phases.
The first phase will add four new lanes, extending La Pata Avenue from just south of Vita Montana to Calle Saluda, according to the Orange County Public Works Department.
The second phase will add a lane in each direction of La Pata between Ortega Highway and just south of Vista Montana, according to Public Works officials. The final phase will extend Camino Del Rio to La Pata.
"The La Pata Extension Project is the most significant county roadway improvement remaining in south Orange County," said Orange County Supervisor Patricia Bates. "Breaking ground on this project today fulfills a vision that I have pursued passionately. I am pleased to see construction get underway."
The project also will fill a gap between Ortega Highway to the north and Avenida Vista Hermosa to the south, officials said.
--City News Service