Empire Avenue Interchange

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My-I-5-LogoQuestions about the Interstate 5 / Empire Interchange Project?  Contact Caltrans by Phone or Online:

            www.my5la.com                        (855) 454-6335

Call or write Caltrans representatives directly with questions or concerns about the project. 


Learn More About the Empire Interchange Project

Latest Empire Interchange Project Updates

To get the latest Empire Interchange project updates, please visit Caltrans' project website at www.my5la.com.  Direct links to project updates are below:

Week of July 16 Updates

Latest Closures and Construction Activities

Latest Project News

Project Meetings

June 22, 2017


On Wednesday, June 28, 2017, Caltrans will host its fourth annual I-5 Empire Project Community Open House. Caltrans staff will provide a project update and talk one-on-one with attendees. The Open House will be held at the Community Services Building at 150 N. Third Street in Burbank, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

For more information, click here.


May 19, 2016

On June 9, 2016, Caltrans will host the third annual I-5 Empire Project Community Open House. Caltrans staff will provide a project update and talk one-on-one with attendees. The Open House will be held at the Buena Vista Library at 300 N Buena Vista St. in Burbank, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Thursday, June 9, 2016. 

For more information, click here.

September 20, 2015

Caltrans' contractors will be pile driving at Buena Vista Street and I-5 from September 19 through October 16.  Pile driving will occur 7AM to 7PM weekdays and weekends.  Construction will include full weekend closures of Buena Vista Street at I-5 and midday lane closures during the week. For more information see the construction flyer or visit the Caltrans project website at www.my5la.com.

 May 5, 2015 


On Wednesday, May 27, 2015 at 6PM, Caltrans will be hosting a Community Meeting for interested residents, business owners, and others to learn about the project.  The meeting will be held in Room 104 of the City of Burbank Community Services Building at 150 N. Third Street.  The presentation will provide and update on the project, including construction activities, project phasing, and schedule.  It will also provide an opportunity for members of the community to ask questions directly to Caltrans and Burbank city staff.

May 30, 2014

Construction has begun!  Caltrans began major construction activities by closing the northbound San Fernando underpass to I-5 on May 20th, with the southbound lanes closing a few days later.  In addition, Victory Place was reconfigured to one lane in each direction near Empire Center.  This narrowing is needed to relocate utilities and begin excavation for the Empire Interchange.  The City and Caltrans thank motorists for their patience while the traffic control was put in place and traffic signals were temporarily placed in a "red-flash" configuration for safety of the corridor while the traffic controls were installed.  Traffic signals near the center have resumed normal operations and traffic congestion in the area should be improved.  Caltrans has also begun freeway median work and will begin demolishing the San Fernando underpass in the coming weeks.  Residents on Buena Vista Street north of Winona Avenue have lost some street parking to allow Caltrans to install double left turn lanes onto the freeway to ease congestion caused by the San Fernando closure.  Finally, Caltrans, Metro, and the City of Burbank held a groundbreaking ceremony on May 28th, 2014 to commemorate the start of the project.  For up-to-date information, please visit the Caltrans website at www.i-5info.com.

March 25, 2014 


Caltrans has posted the presentation materials from the March 20 Community Open House on their project website at www.i-5info.com.  Direct links to the material can be downloaded below:

March 11, 2014 


On March 20, 2014, Caltrans will be hosting a Community Open House for interested residents, business owners, and others to learn about the project.  The meeting will be held in Room 104 of the City of Burbank Community Services Building at 150 N. Third Street.  The presentation will provide information on the project description and goals, construction phasing, and schedule.  It will also provide an opportunity for members of the community to ask questions directly to Caltrans and Burbank city staff.  More information can be found here.  We hope to see you there!

Caltrans and its contractor, Security Paving, continue to work with the City of Burbank, Metro, and other project participants to prepare for the start of construction. This includes developing more detailed phasing plans for how to coordinate utility work with the start of the actual freeway and railroad construction.  The City has also begun preparing for the long-term closure of San Fernando Boulevard by upgrading traffic signals located along the major detour routes for the closure.  Caltrans estimates that actual construction will begin sometime in May 2014.  In addition, work continues on the portion of the project between State Route 134 and Magnolia Boulevard, as the Caltrans contractor makes progress on various freeway improvements including bridge work at Alameda and Western, and crash barrier work all along the entire segment.

January 24, 2014

Beginning the week of January 27 and continuing for 4 months, the Caltrans contractor, Security Paving, will begin stockpiling dirt and construction materials for the Interstate 5 project adjacent to Front Street between Burbank Boulevard and Magnolia Boulevard.  Truck deliveries will occur during nighttime hours between Sunday night and Friday morning.  Approximately 120 truck deliveries per night will be needed to transport the material, and trucks will access the site from the southbound Burbank Blvd. off-ramp and depart via the Verdugo Avenue on-ramp using Front Street.

January 2014

Caltrans, Metro, utility companies, and the City of Burbank reached a major project milestone by completing design documents for a plan to remove utility conflicts from the project site at Empire Avenue.  Caltrans is now working with the project contractor to review the utility plan and prepare for construction to begin.  The City successfully completed the relocation of a sewer line near Empire Center and traffic circulation in and around the Center have been restored.  In the coming months, Burbank residents should expect to see further utility work in the area as the both City crews and the Caltrans contractor are expected to complete the relocation of overhead electrical lines into underground facilities around the Empire Avenue project site.

Work has also progressed on the southern portion of the I-5 project near Downtown Burbank.  In December, Caltrans opened the northbound Alameda Avenue offramp to traffic after completing modifications to the offramp necessary to install the future carpool lane in this area.  The Caltrans contractor continues to work on retaining walls near Olive Avenue, Verdugo Avenue, and Providencia Avenue to prepare for bridges to be widened. Finally, Caltrans expects to pave portions of the realigned northbound Olive Avenue offramp in January.  A temporary offramp is currently in place to direct motorists around this construction.

October 2013

Caltrans, Metro, and the City of Burbank, along with other utility companies, are nearly finished with a comprehensive utility plan to remove critical utility conflicts from the project site at Empire Avenue.  This plan is necessary to allow Caltrans' contractor to begin work, which is still expected occur in January 2014.  The City's sewer relocation in Empire Center is progressing on schedule for completion in mid-November.  Work in the Empire Center itself has finished, and crews are now working within Empire Avenue.  Drivers are asked to watch for lane closures and other construction activity in the area.  In addition, relocation of petroleum and fiber communication lines in the railroad right of way are nearly complete.  Earlier this month, utility contractors closed San Fernando Boulevard at I-5 over two nights to remove the old lines from the Victory Place Bridge.  The new lines have been relocated further underground.  Finally, the City of Burbank is beginning important traffic signal upgrades throughout the project area that will be in place before construction begins.  These upgrades will improve construction detour traffic on local streets and will also allow the City's Traffic Management Center personnel to better monitor and respond to congestion during the project.

Older Project Updates

City of Burbank Project Contact Information

For more information on the Empire Interchange Project, please contact David Kriske, Assistant Director for Transportation with the Community Development Department.

What is the Project?

The Empire Interchange / Interstate 5 Improvement Project is a series of enhancements to the Interstate 5 Freeway, including a new interchange at Empire Avenue. This project, lead by Caltrans and funded primarily by Los Angeles County transportation sales tax funds provided by Metro, will relieve congestion along Interstate 5 while providing an important new access to the Golden State area of Burbank, including the Empire Center and Bob Hope Airport.

Project Highlights

  • Full freeway interchange at Empire Avenue
  • New freeway and railroad crossing allowing access to Empire Center
  • Freeway widening including 2 carpool lanes and weaving lanes
  • Burbank Blvd. Interchange Demolition & Reconstruction
  • Railroad grade separation at Buena Vista Street
  • Realignment / Closure of San Fernando Blvd near Lincoln Street.

 Project Location Map

This complex project is fully funded Caltrans has awarded a contract for its construction.  Construction began in May 2014 and all the project components should be completed by 2019. However, certain project components would be completed earlier depending on project phasing.

Project Benefits

The highlight of the project is the construction of a new interchange with Empire Avenue in the vicinity of the current Scott Road offramp. This new interchange will provide full access to the freeway from both San Fernando Boulevard and Empire Avenue and allow traffic destined to the new Empire Center a direct freeway connection. The intersection would connect San Fernando directly to Empire Avenue providing a new link between Downtown Burbank and eastern Burbank with the Airport Area in western Burbank. This connection will improve circulation for vehicles, bicyclists, pedestrians, and transit vehicles.

Project Diagram

This project also includes reconstructing the Burbank Blvd interchange near the former "5-Points" intersection to improve circulation and reconfigure the outdated loop ramps with a modern diamond interchange.  The project also removes a railroad crossing at Buena Vista Street to improve safety by removing train-vehicle conflicts. Metrolink tracks will pass over both Buena Vista as well as the new Empire Avenue connection.  The Empire Interchange project is part of a larger effort to add carpool lanes along Interstate 5 through the City of Burbank. The freeway will be widened, and extra auxillary lanes added to accommodate the new freeway ramps. The map below shows the various components of the Empire Avenue Interchange and related projects in Burbank.

Project Components

Project Renderings


Empire Avenue looking east from Valpreda Street towards the new Empire Interchange.  New Victory Place overcrossing and railroad bridge are visible.  Rendering includes optional landscaping treatments being considered by the City.


Aerial view of new Empire Interchange looking northwest.  New diamond interchange, freeway bridge, and railroad bridge is visible.


Buena Vista Street looking north at San Fernando Boulevard towards new railroad grade separation.

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