Road update for Sequoia Kings

Staff Writer

Work on the Generals Highway Construction Project in Sequoia National Park will be ramping up in the coming weeks. This project began in mid-June and will be underway for two construction seasons. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is reconstructing a segment of the Generals Highway between Amphitheater Point Overlook and Crystal Cave Road (Deer Ridge to Eleven Range).

Beginning Friday, June 30, parking will be limited at the Potwisha trail head parking lot. Fencing will go up and take up to 70% of the parking lot. Restroom and trail access will remain open.

Starting July 5, vehicles 22 feet or longer will be prohibited between Hospital Rock and Giant Forest Museum in Sequoia National Park. During construction, the FHWA will close one lane of the highway by use of K rail. This will cause the highway to be narrowed, and unable to safely accommodate vehicles over 22 feet. The highway closure is being extended to the nearest turn around locations for vehicles of that size to the south at Hospital Rock and north at Giant Forest Museum. Hwy 180, the northern entrance to these parks, is the preferred route for these longer vehicles.

Monday, July 10 will be the start of night closures on the Generals Highway in Sequoia National Park. The road will be closed from Amphitheater Point Overlook to Crystal Cave Road (Deer Ridge to Eleven Range) from 9 pm to 5 am, with only one pass-through at 11:30 pm.

Tuesday, July 11 will have an extended foot print for the night road closure. The road will be closed from Hospital Rock to Crystal Cave Road.

UPDATED DELAY SCHEDULE

Holidays
There will be no road work on July 4th weekend starting 5:00 pm Friday until 7:00 am Wednesday.

Monday- Friday: 5 am to 7 am (20-minute delays)

Monday- Thursday: 7 am-8 pm (1-hour delays)
Expect delays of up to 1 hour. Traffic passes through the construction zone at the beginning of each hour. Uphill traffic passes first, followed by downhill traffic. Plan on arriving about ten minutes before each hour.

Monday-Thursday: 9 pm to 5 am
Road closed except for one pass-through at 11:30 pm, uphill traffic first.

Friday: 7 am to 5 pm (1-hour delays)
Expect delays of up to 1 hour. Traffic passes through the construction zone at the beginning of each hour. Uphill traffic passes first, followed by downhill traffic. Plan on arriving about ten minutes before each hour.

Weekends (Possible 20-minute delays)
No delays when both lanes are open. When highway is limited to one lane, expect delays up to 20 minutes. Traffic lights will control traffic, uphill traffic first.

Project Details
To date, reconstruction has been completed between the south park entrance (at Hwy 198) and Deer Ridge. The portion of the Generals Highway Construction Project beginning in 2017 will be completed in 2 phases:

Phase 1 consists of approximately 1 mile of the Generals Highway from Deer Ridge to Eleven Range Overlook (between Amphitheater Point Overlook and Crystal Cave Road). The work is extensive: reconstruct the road to widen narrow sections, construct new or rehabilitate existing retaining walls, improve drainage, construct new pullouts, and make other improvements.

Phase 2 includes repaving Wolverton Road from its intersection with the Generals Highway to the Wolverton Picnic Area and Trailhead parking lot. The entire project will require two construction seasons (2017 and 2018) to complete.

The intent of the Generals Highway Construction Project is to correct structural and drainage deficiencies that could lead to major road failure and that jeopardize the integrity of the road and safety of visitors. In addition, the proposed improvements are intended to provide a pleasant driving experience, improve traffic flow, facilitate maintenance operations, and reduce maintenance costs.

For the latest information and construction updates, visit www.nps.gov/seki/planyourvisit/road-construction.

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