Crews add finishing touches to Presidio Parkway during Doyle Drive closure

SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU) -- The long awaited Doyle Drive replacement job will be done Monday morning after a four-day closure that is scheduled to begin this Thursday at 4 p.m. 

A KTVU camera got to take a ride along the new roadway that provides entrance two and exit from the Golden Gate Bridge.

The new Doyle Drive is just the latest piece of proof that building or replacing critically needed infrastructure improves lives.

As you roll along the soon to be open structure, you can't help but marvel at the complexity that gives it its elegant simplicity.

"We've got three new tunnels, a new bridge and then six little bridges, new access to the Presidio that nobody's ever taken. And then to get into the Marina, you have to get into the right hand lane," explained Doyle Drive Project spokeswoman Molly Graham.

The new ramps’ connections to Highway 1 will reopen after five years of closure. But the work during the coming weekend is needed to connect it all together.

"There's all kinds of materials that have arrived on site, there's equipment deliveries every night, they've just set up a new batch plant for the concrete, so they've gotten as much done beforehand as they possibly can," said Graham.

The real finishing work is to remove a lot of existing roadways and lay a lot of steel and concrete to the new ones.

"The key things are to remove the temporary detour that on the way of the connection.  So they first need to get rid of that roadway and then build up the new roadway.  So at the very east end, they actually need to build up the roadway 7 to 10 feet." added Graham. 

The Golden Gate Bridge will remain open, but not for cars full of curious spectators.

"Walk or bike but do not bring your car, because the parking lots will all be closed; both the north and the south. There will be no place to park, your vehicle will be turned away," said Golden Gate Bridge District spokeswoman Priya Clemens.

Come Monday, all of the interconnections to the city and the bridge mean a new learning curve for commuters.

"And we're changing the approach to the Golden Gate Bridge. The merge  lanes are going to be in a new traffic pattern, so, come Monday morning, drivers should be watching the roads very carefully because the lanes are going to be a little different than they are used to," said Clemens.

While some of this increases the capacity and will make things way more efficient, no one should ever forget that the intent of this project all along was aimed at improving the seismic safety for a major highway that was sure to collapse in a major earthquake.