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Corona closure of 91 Freeway is on schedule to reopen Monday morning

All lanes of the 91 Freeway in Corona, which is closed this week for major construction work, will reopen Monday at 4 a.m. as scheduled, transportation officials said.

“The progress of our crews has been phenomenal,” Anne Mayer, executive director of the Riverside County Transportation Commission, said in a statement Sunday. “All of our efforts are on schedule or ahead of schedule, thanks to the hard-working crews and to the people who followed our advice to steer clear of the area.”

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The six-mile stretch of freeway between Interstate 15 and California 71 was shut down at 9 p.m. Friday so road crews could begin demoliton and repaving work. Once the roadway reopens Monday, the lane configuration will have changed, so commuters are urged to be cautious through these new areas, said Eliza Echevarria Perez, public affairs manager for the Riverside County Transportation Commission.

Crews this weekend have been working to tear down the western half of the Maple Street Bridge that extends over the freeway. By Sunday morning, they had completed 90% of the demolition and removed above 2,000 tons of concrete.

Once the overpass section is demolished, workers will install support beams over the westbound lanes of the 91 so construction can proceed on a new Maple Street flyover. Crews are also repaving a section of eastbound 91 near Interstate 15.

Mayer said she was pleased to see that drivers Saturday were steering clear of the region and traffic was flowing in the closure area. She asked motorists to be mindful on Sunday as well.

"Today, we need motorists to do the same,” she said in a statement. “We do not want motorists to be complacent and think, ‘Oh, traffic wasn’t bad yesterday, so let’s head toward Corona.’ This is exactly what we don’t want to happen.”

Officials said the best detours are the 57 or 60 freeways as well as the 10, 210, 215 and 605. Commuters can also take the Metrolink commuter train -- those who buy one ticket can get another free over the weekend.

The construction work is part of the 91 project, which calls for new lanes, toll lanes, auxiliary lanes and connectors from the northbound I-15 to the westbound 91 and from the eastbound 91 to the southbound 15.

Follow @RosannaXia for more Southern California news. 

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