Caltrans reaches $1 billion in Central Coast construction projects

March 8, 2023

New carpool lanes on U.S. 101 in Carpenteria


Caltrans has reached an historic milestone with 83 total projects worth more than $1 billion dollars in active construction in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties.

“This is a landmark achievement for the district which has grown in population over the years,” said Caltrans District 5 Director Scott Eades. “We are pleased that we have created, completed and continue to construct projects that will improve infrastructure for all travelers whether by foot, bicycle, bus or automobile on the Central Coast.”

Current projects include:

  • $116 million to widen Highway 46 East to the Shandon Roadside Rest Area to west of the Jack Ranch Café in Cholame in San Luis Obispo County. The project will convert a two-lane divided highway into a four-lane expressway. It follows four completed phases from Paso Robles to Cholame with future plans to improve the Highway 46 and Highway 41 intersection.
  • $96 million to construct the first ever carpool lanes in Santa Barbara County on Highway 101 through Carpinteria in Santa Barbara County. This recently completed segment is part of a five phase, $700 million congestion relief project. The Carpinteria portion includes new on and offramps, new bridges, new sound walls, and improved intersections for bicyclists and pedestrians.
  • $78 million to rehabilitate pavement on six miles of Highway 101 and to retrofit and widen the Salinas River Bridge near King City in Monterey County. The project will provide a safer driving surface and strengthen the bridges to withstand a future seismic event.
  • $13.7 million to construct a two-lane roundabout at the intersection of state routes 25 and 156, north of Hollister in San Benito County.
  • $5.4 million to build a Wildlife undercrossing near Scotts Valley on Highway 17 at the Laurel Curve in Santa Cruz County.

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This is the same Caltrans Union who decided that prisoners shouldn’t pickup trash along the freeways to ensure that a union worker get to do it. Now we have union workers getting paid union wages paid by tax dollars to pick up trash. What a waste. 3 men per shovel doesn’t help either.

Of the projects listed (not the Central Coast I think of) the biggest spending is to get more vehicles to the Central Coast we live in. During my time on CTAC in the late 80’s, I advocated upgrading Highway 101 through the County FIRST before we improve the connections elsewhere. When we get slammed with traffic, it will be far more expensive and at a very great inconvenience to the locals who can’t see past their nose, stand in line for free and have allowed this mess. Yes, this concerns me and you should be concerned too. You may disapprove with this comment, I good with that, and then run to some other state, I’m good with that too.

Hundreds of millions of dollars for automobiles… *Silence* .

A few million for substantial bike/pedestrian infrastructure… *Glowing with rage* “wHaT a WaStE of taxpayer dollars, destroying our community, making it impossible to speed and kill cyclists, burning our crops, and stealing our women”

Yes, it’s always an “achievement” to tax and spend. And this is spending that cannot take the lowest bidder. Union only.

Congrats to CalTrans District 5!

Now that’s what “infrastructure “ is supposed to be about

Nice work CT District 5!