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SAN DIEGO (CNS) – With vehicle traffic down due to state and local stay-at-home orders, the city of San Diego has taken advantage by starting work on repaving a stretch of one of the city’s busiest streets, officials said Tuesday.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, city officials say traffic is down about 50% along North Harbor Drive, which serves as the main gateway from San Diego International Airport into downtown San Diego.

Work began Monday morning on repaving 3.3 miles of the road between Ash Street and Nimitz Boulevard in both directions. The work includes striping modifications and the addition of buffered bike lanes.

“First impressions are important, and the first thing most people see when they come to San Diego is the bumpy ride as they leave the San Diego International Airport,” Mayor Kevin Faulconer said. “This stretch of road is so busy that there’s never really a convenient time to make repairs, so we’re taking advantage of the reduced traffic from the statewide stay-at-home order to overhaul and improve this major thoroughfare for the first time in two decades.”

The paving project is expected to be completed in about three weeks, according to the city.

“Great to see this long-needed project moving forward, especially during a time when it should present minimal disruption for San Diego residents, businesses, and visitors,” said City Councilman Mark Kersey, who also serves as a board member of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. “Our infrastructure backlog was not created overnight and cannot be solved overnight, but resurfacing Harbor Drive is an important step toward rebuilding San Diego.”