– Caltrans press release
Bishop – The California Transportation Commission (CTC) allocated over $254 million for 41 transportation projects that will enhance the safety and mobility of Californians throughout the state, which includes $3.4 million for locally-administered Active Transportation Program projects that encourage biking and walking.
“Investing in our infrastructure benefits Californians for generations to come and these projects will improve mobility for all users of the transportation system, whether they choose to travel by car, take transit or ride a bicycle,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.
The allocations included $116.2 million from Proposition 1B, the 2006 voter-approved transportation bond. This included $108 million to purchase diesel-electric locomotives and bi-level passenger railcars to improve intercity rail service by providing new capacity and replacing aging Amtrak-owned locomotives. Portions of that allocation will also be utilized for installing video and audio communications to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disability Act. Since its passage, more than $18 billion in Proposition 1B funds have been put to work statewide for transportation purposes.
The remaining $134.9 million in allocations came from assorted transportation accounts funded by state and federal dollars.
Some of the notable projects that received allocations include:
$8,347,000 was allocated for the Lee Vining Rock Fall Project that will re-vegetate and install anchored mesh on three roadway slopes and re-vegetate three additional slope locations to reduce erosion, stabilize the slopes and minimize the potential for rocks falling on U.S. Hwy 395 near Lee Vining (0.4 mile north of the National Forest Visitor Center to 0.7 mile north of the Picnic Grounds Road.
$1,673,000 was allocated to Inyo County for the South Bishop Resurfacing Project, which comprises of three county roads. New asphalt surfacing will be installed on 5.4 miles of roadway to improve maintainability and the lifetime of the pavement.
$670,000 was allocated for the Sunland Drive Bicycle Lanes Project. The project will widen Sunland Drive and install bicycle lanes, striping and signage to improve safety for bicyclists, provide a route from Bishop City Center to Wilkerson, and an alternative route for bicyclists traveling on U.S. Hwy 395.
The CTC also approved $64.7 million in supplemental funds for the Route 101-Willits Bypass project in Mendocino County. The funds are necessary to address time delays needed to complete the project due to unexpected costs incurred by work stoppages caused by protesters, increased environmental permitting requirements and an increase to the pace of environmental mitigation.
Legislation requires development and implementation of a pilot program in California to study Road Usage Charge alternatives to the current gas tax, per SB 1077. As such, the CTC also approved 15 members to the Road Usage Charge Technical Advisory Committee whose recommendations will be used to inform the development of the pilot program.