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The Golden Triangle is going through a period of tremendous growth! Nearly 50 major public, private and transportation infrastructure projects are underway or planned over the next five years. The Shift team is here to help mitigate the impact of possible challenges created by construction and provide transportation choices to make it easier to get around. Check out the shift blog to stay up-to-date on the latest Golden Triangle transportation resources and experiences from commuters, residents and families in this area.

    Interview with Adrian Cortez, Gilman Drive Bridge Resident Engineer/Construction Engineer Manager
    by Shift San Diego | Jan 31, 2019

    Interview with Adrian Cortez, Gilman Drive Bridge Resident Engineer/Construction Engineer Manager

    img_Gilman_before_after_v1Q: How long have you worked for Caltrans? What led you to pursue a career in construction management? What projects do you currently oversee?

    AC: Just last month, I hit my 20-year anniversary as a bridge engineer with Caltrans in the Structure Construction division. What originally led me to pursue a career in construction as a resident engineer is the opportunity to make a positive impact with projects that affect the traveling public. I really enjoy my work, and I like that as engineers for the state, we are public servants. 

    As a resident engineer, we are responsible for delivering the project on schedule, ideally even when unexpected delays or construction issues may arise. I find project management extremely rewarding – when I meet the budget, help keep the contractor on schedule, and collaborate with colleagues and the contractor to problem solve, it gives me a sense of fulfillment. It’s also really important that we, as taxpayers, are getting an excellent product that will last for generations.

    We are about to wrap up a major 25-month bridge project that I’ve been a lead on: the Gilman Drive Bridge. So at present, I’m beginning a new project as the structure representative for a section of the light rail from La Jolla Colony Drive to Nobel Drive that has shotcrete walls, a cut-and-cover tunnel, and two small bridges. 

    Read the full interview to learn more about the Gilman Drive Bridge and the intricacies of bridge construction. 

    Jan 31, 2019
    Shift Resources for La Jolla and University City Residents
    by Shift San Diego | Jan 31, 2019

    You may have noticed the various construction projects underway in the University City and La Jolla neighborhoods. With a combination of small intersection improvements and large-scale overhauls to improve traffic flow and connectivity, like the Gilman Drive Bridge or the Mid-Coast Trolley, you may be wondering how to plan around roadway disruptions throughout the area.

    Learn more about the resources available for residents, businesses, and commuters impacted by these construction projects.

    Jan 31, 2019
    Shift Monthly Construction Update - January 2019
    by Shift San Diego | Jan 31, 2019

    January 2019 - Shift Program Monthly Construction Update

    We’re excited to share updates on some of the major projects that will bring access to new community amenities and resources in your neighborhood. Please note, construction schedules are subject to change. To confirm the work featured during this month's update and other work schedules, contact Shift at 844-SHIFT-SD.
    Visit or follow @ShiftSanDiego on Twitter for the most up-to-date information on construction impacts in the area.

    Read more.

    Jan 31, 2019
    What Motivates You to Walk or Bike to Work?
    by Shift San Diego | Jan 11, 2019

    It’s tough trying to stay active while juggling work and home responsibilities. Who has the time or energy to squeeze in a gym workout after sitting through bumper to bumper traffic for an hour?

    Click here for our top 10 reasons why you should get outside and walk or bike to work (at least once a week).

    Jan 11, 2019
    The 411 on 511
    by Shift San Diego | Dec 17, 2018

    Having car trouble? Out of gas? Flat tire? Call 511!

    Drivers stranded on freeways in the San Diego region can dial 511 from a cell phone for FREE roadside assistance. SANDAG, in partnership with Caltrans and CHP, operates a Freeway Service Patrol (FSP) that provides free roadside assistance to drivers stranded along approximately 222 miles of local freeways in San Diego County. The FSP operates Monday through Friday from 5:30 – 9:30 a.m. and 2:30 – 6:30 p.m., except on Federal holidays. With SB1 funding, a pilot program will expand hours to midday and weekend service. Midday service from 10-2 on weekdays will start on July 1, and weekend service from 10 – 6 will start on August 1.

    FSP’s crew of certified drivers help with:

    • A gallon of gas
    • A jump start
    • Water for the radiator
    • Changing a flat tire
    • Towing to a safe, pre-determined location designated by CHP (if they can’t get your vehicle running)

    For help, simply call 511 and say, “Roadside Assistance”.

    FSP tow or pickup trucks are white with the statewide FSP logo on the door. Drivers wear blue uniforms and yellow safety vests and are not allowed to accept tips or payment.

    For more information, please visit

    Did you have a positive experience with one of our FSP drivers? Email us to let us know!

    Photo of SANDAG 511- Freeway Service Patrol Program - San Diego, CA, United States

    Call 511 from any phone to be also connected toll-free to public transportation, traffic conditions, iCommute, FasTrak®, Compass Card, and a Spanish menu.

    Additionally, go to to learn about other commuter resources here, such as:

    • Construction information for the Golden Triangle/University City area
    • Vanpool subsidy (up to $400 a month)
    • Guaranteed Ride Home Program (for those who commute alternatively to work)

    Dec 17, 2018
    Shift Monthly Construction Update - November
    by Shift San Diego | Nov 28, 2018

    Shift Program Monthly Construction Update

    We’re excited to share updates on some of the major projects that will bring access to new community amenities and resources in your neighborhood. Please note, construction schedules are subject to change. To confirm the below and other work schedules, contact Shift at 844-SHIFT-SD.



    ConstructionTerm HighlightRetaining walls are rigid structures designed to restrain soil to a desired slope that it would not naturally keep to.

    Various types of retaining walls are currently being constructed in the La Jolla Colony Drive area, including cast-in-place, soil nail, MSE, and soldier pile. Different wall types are used depending on many factors including soil type, protecting utilities, and supporting roadways among others. The future cut-and-cover tunnel at La Jolla Colony Drive will be constructed with cast-in-place walls under the roadway and various other types will be used leading into and away from the roadway area.

    Mid-Coast Trolley Construction Along Genesee Avenue, SANDAG Project

    The Mid-Coast Trolley construction is continuing along the Genesee Avenue at several intersections. Girder construction along Genesee Avenue, north of La Jolla Village Drive will continue through January 2019.

    View closure updates at, or @ShiftSanDiego on Twitter.

    The Mid-Coast Trolley construction at the La Jolla Village Drive and Genesee Avenue intersection as of November 2018.

    Torrey Pines Golf Course, City of San Diego Project

    Preparations for the Farmers Insurance Open began in early October with a wall-to-wall overseeding process of perennial ryegrass on both the North Course and the South Course. Each of these award-winning layouts play host to San Diego’s PGA TOUR stop. The buildout for the event itself began on November 1, 2018, with the building of grandstands, hospitality tents and television towers across the two golf courses.

    Immediately following the event taking place Jan. 24-27, a South Course remodel is slated to begin in February 2019. This will include a new irrigation system, improved bunker infrastructure and improved turf on approaches. In addition, two holes will undergo a minor transformation to improve shot values that both San Diego residents, visitors and TOUR players alike can all enjoy. The City of San Diego Parks and Recreation Department is proud to improve its flagship golf property for everyone.

    Torrey Pines Golf Course prepares for the Farmers Insurance Open
    held from Jan. 23-27, 2019.

    Gilman Drive Bridge, SANDAG and Caltrans Project

    The falsework – temporary support structures used during construction– for the Gilman Drive Bridge were removed in early November, revealing the bridge’s form for the first time since the project started in 2016.

    The finishing work, including sand blasting and patching blemishes, is anticipated to be completed in early 2019. Once open, there will be striping, sidewalks and crosswalk improvements as part of the Medical Center Drive South Improvement Project.

    Before-and-After: The Gilman Drive Bridge form is revealed in early November 2018.

    Gilman Drive Public Sewer Improvements, UC San Diego and City of San Diego Project

    Phase 7 construction at the northernmost point of Gilman Drive before the La Jolla Village Drive overpass was completed in November. The final overlay and striping of Gilman Drive is scheduled to occur between the end of UC San Diego’s Fall Quarter on Dec. 17 through the beginning of Winter Quarter on Wednesday, Jan. 3.

    UC San Diego Mesa Housing Pedestrian and Bike Bridge, UC San Diego Project

    The Mesa Housing Pedestrian and Bike Bridge Project consists of a new bridge across a canyon on the UC San Diego Campus to directly link the Mesa Graduate Housing neighborhood with the Medical Center campus. The bridge will allow walking and biking with significantly shorter, safer routes to campus using the new Gilman Drive Bridge.

    Cranes will be set up in late November or early December for the installation of bridge girders. For more information on this project, visit:

    Let us know what projects you’re most interested in receiving information about via email at or phone at 1-844-SHIFT-SD. Visit to sign up for email alerts about major construction updates and access the map of all the ongoing projects.

    The Shift San Diego team

    Nov 28, 2018
    Tips for Calculating Your Commute
    by Shift San Diego | Nov 19, 2018

    Have you ever wondered how much time and money you spend on your daily commute? You don’t have to be a mathlete to figure it out, just use the iCommute Commute Calculator! It’s easy and results are immediate. Check out these 7 tips to improve your commute.

    1. Figure out how many days per month you commute.
      1. Twenty-one days is a typical number for full-time employees. Calculate how many days you drive alone and then separately how many days you commute by an alternative mode .
    2. Add up how far your round-trip commute to work is.
      1. A round-trip is the total amount of miles when you go to and from work. Using Google Maps is the easiest way to see how far your route is. Just type in your to and from addresses and multiply by two for your round-trip miles.
    3. Price Compare Gas Stations
      1. You can easily compare gas station prices near you by typing in “gas” in the search bar of Google Maps, either on your phone or desktop. Google automatically shows you a list of the prices of gas stations near you.
    4. View your daily, monthly, and yearly commute costs.
      1. Fill out the simple questions on the iCommute Commute Calculator. This is an excellent tool to use when establishing a budget and doing taxes!
    5. Consider taking transit
      1. Gas can get pricey! Especially in California. Cut down your costs with iCommute’s variety of alternative commuting choices like carpool, vanpool, bike, walk and transit. Filling out the Commute Calculator shows how much you would pay daily, monthly and yearly for each different transit option.
    6. Consider carpooling
      1. Ask your coworkers and friends if they’d want to carpool. Even one day a week cuts costs! Having trouble finding someone? Waze Carpool on the App Store or Google Play can easily match you with people also looking to carpool. Some employers offer an incentive for carpoolers!
    7. Sign up for the vanpool interest list
      1. iCommute makes it easy to find a vanpool that works with your commute. Plus, you can earn financial incentives through a vanpool subsidy provided by SANDAG. You can even start your own vanpool!
    Get your fingers calculating and get yourself into a new commute. Even changing your commute a of couple times a week can make a big difference for your pocketbook, the environment and your overall health & wellbeing. Knowing what you know now about the cost of your commute, what type of change will you try for getting to work?

    Nov 19, 2018
    Transit Etiquette 101
    by Shift San Diego | Nov 05, 2018

    Here area few tips to make your commute more enjoyable, relaxing, and cost effective. Read on to learn more!

    Planning Ahead

    • Get to the transit stop five to ten minutes before your scheduled departure time to make sure you don’t miss your ride .
    • When riding the bus, pick the right spot. Check that you are on the correct side of the street and stand up as the bus approaches to signal that you are ready to be picked up.
    • If you’re paying with cash, have exact change when riding the bus. Drivers don’t carry change. You can easily get a Compass Card or download Compass Cloud from the app to make payment easier. Just call 511 and say “Compass” to get more information.


    • When riding the Trolley or COASTER, you must purchase a ticket before boarding. There are ticket vending machines at each station where you can pay by cash, card, or reload a Compass Card.

      You can also pay for your pass with the Compass Cloud app on your mobile device.

    • All routes are wheelchair accessible.
    • Bikes are allowed on buses (two per bus) as well as the COASTER, SPRINTER, and all Trolley lines. Learn how to bring your bike onto MTS and NCTD.

    Be Aware

    • Be cautious in traffic; drivers and other motorists may not see you. Don’t run across the street for a bus and never run in front of a bus.
    • Choose a safe location. If possible, wait at a well-lit bus stop or one with other passengers and pedestrians nearby.
    • In the event of an emergency, a bus driver can radio the control office for help from first responders. If you need assistance or witness an emergency, ask your operator for help.
    • Don’t block the aisle with strollers or other objects.
    • Occupy only one seat; place bags or parcels near your feet or on your lap.

    Be Respectful

    • Offer seating to elderly or disabled riders if you are in good health.
    • Avoid loud conversations, music, cell phone calls, and foul language.
    • Stay clear of all walkways and door areas.
    • Avoid eating or drinking on board.
    • Be considerate of future riders and don’t deface the vehicle with graffiti, trash, or anything else that does not belong.


    • Be mindful of which stop you need to get off at and aware of which stop comes before.
    • Take all your belongings when you leave, including newspapers and trash. Double check you have your phone, wallet, and keys!
    • Exit through the rear doors to allow passengers getting on board to use the front door.

    Whether you are new to transit or an existing transit commuter, these are great tips to keep in mind when you travel by bus, trolley or train.

    Learn more about your transportation solutions at

    Take the bus with San Diego Metropolitan Transit System at

    Explore North County with North County Transit District at

    Nov 05, 2018
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