🛣 Changes to the California Highway Website covering August-October 2022

I know what I’m thankful for this weekend: Finishing these updates. Between the podcast, these updates, theatre, moving stuff from my office back home (a side effect of the ranch moving to a “hoteling” model if you aren’t in 4 days a week or more), and getting ready for ACSAC, it’s been hard to find the time to get these done. But done they are, so you can enjoy them as you get into the holiday season.

This update covers August, September, and October. Before we dive into the updates to the California Highways site, an update on the California Highways: Route by Route podcast. Since July, we’ve kept up the schedule of regular posting of episodes. You can keep up with the show at the podcast’s forever home at https://www.caroutebyroute.org/ , the show’s page on anchor.fm, or you can subscribe through your favorite podcaster or via the RSS feeds (CARxRAnchor.FM) . The following episodes have been posted since the last update:

We’re still looking for interviews for upcoming episodes in Season 1. Please let me know if you have any leads for the following episodes:

  • For 1.06: Someone familiar with CEQA and its impact on the highway construction process; also the impact of regional transportation planning agencies
  • For 1.07: Someone familiar with California’s state highway numbering, and in particular, with how post miles are used in California.
  • For 1.08: Someone familiar with AASHTO’s role in highway numbering.

Turning to the updates to the California Highways pages: Updates were made to the following highways, based on my reading of the (virtual) papers in August, September, and October 2022 (which are posted to the roadgeeking category at the “Observations Along The Road” and to the California Highways Facebook group) as well as any backed up email changes. I also reviewed the the AAroads forum (Ꜳ). This resulted in changes on the following routes, with credit as indicated [my research(ℱ), contributions of information or leads (via direct mail or ꜲRoads) from FredAkbar(2), Tom Fearer(3), Matthew Goetz(4)kernals12(5), Jim Ross(6), Chris Sampang(7), Joel Windmiller(8): Route 1(3,5), Route 11(ℱ), Route 12(ℱ), Route 14(ℱ), Route 17(ℱ), Route 20(ℱ), Route 24(7), Route 29(ℱ), Route 30(ℱ), Route 36(ℱ), Route 37(ℱ,4), Route 46(ℱ), Route 49(ℱ,3,8), US 50(ℱ), Route 52(ℱ), Route 56(ℱ), Route 58(ℱ), US 66(3,6), Route 60(ℱ), I-80(ℱ), Route 81(3), Route 86(3), Route 88(8), Route 99(ℱ,3), US 101(ℱ,2,3), Route 106(3), Route 108(ℱ), Route 128(ℱ), Route 132(ℱ,3), Route 135(ℱ), Route 140(8), Route 156(ℱ), Route 170(ℱ), Route 198(3),  I-210(ℱ,3), Route 215(ℱ), Route 248(3), Route 256(3), Route 259(ℱ), I-405(ℱ), I-605(ℱ), I-680(ℱ), I-805(ℱ), County Sign Route J14(3), County Sign Route S31(ℱ).
(Source: private email, Highway headline posts through the October Headline post (as indicated), AARoads through TBD)

Added some images of proposed State Route signage to the State Route numbering page. Images courtesy of the ACSC and Morgan Yates.

Reviewed the Pending Legislation page, based on the California Legislature site. As usual, I recommend to every Californian that they visit the legislative website regularly and see what their legis-critters are doing. As many people are unfamiliar with how the legislature operates (and why there are so many “non-substantive changes” and “gut and amend” bills), I’ve added the legislative calendar to the end of the Pending Legislation page. We’re near the end of the session, so here’s what made it out of the process:

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – October 2022

October was another busy month. This time, it was more theatre, combined with finishing and posting Episode 1.04 of the California Highways – Route by Route podcast (Anchor.FM Home, with links to most major podcatching services), getting ready for Episode 1.05 (we start recording as I post this), and getting out my detailed ballot post. Oh, and I’ve been working on the next round of highway page updates (which has resulted in some delayed theatre reviews).

I’ve come to learn that one of the hardest parts of podcasts is scaring up interviews. I finally got someone for Episode 1.05, and now for the upcoming episodes, I’m looking for someone who is willing to talk for 30 minutes or so on the following:

  • For 1.06: The impact of CEQA on road construction in California — including the process both before and after CEQA — as well as the impact of the growing importance of regional transportation agencies on the State Highway System.
  • For 1.07: The California Post-Mile System: Its origin, its use, and why California sticks with it.
  • For 1.08: We return to the US highway system, so I’m looking for someone to discuss some of the history of the numbers of US highways in the state; or, alternatively, someone from AASHTO on the process for getting highway numbers approved.

If you or someone you know would be interested in helping this project, please contact me.

With respect to the main highway pages: I’ve processed the August and September headlines, as well as all the legislative actions (there were lots of naming resolutions). Once this is posted I’ll get to work on the October headlines and AARoads, and then it is on to the CTC minutes. The goal is still to have those updates done in November. Podcast scripts are written through 1.10; all that remains is the naming and transportation organizations episode.

Enough of this shameless self-promotion. Here are the headlines that I found about California’s highways for October:

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor.]

California Highways: Route by Route Podcast

  • California Highways: Route by Route logoCARxR Ep. 1.04: Expanding the State Highway System after WWII. In this episode, we’re continuing to explore the history of the State Highway System, focusing on the period as WWII was ending, the Interstate system was emerging, and the construction boom was starting. This is part of our first season of California Highways: Route by Route, where we are exploring the background needed for our route by route journey. In this episode, we see the birth of the Freeway System in California, starting with the Collier-Burns act increasing state funding for highways, and State and Federal recommendations for higher-capacity systems. We see the growth in cities and urban areas pushing demand for the same, leading to the definition of the Freeway and Expressway System. We cover the passage of the 1956 Interstate Highway Act, and the subsequent freeway conversion and construction boom. Our guest interview is with Dr. Jonathan L. Gifford of the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University. He is also the director of the Center for Transportation Public-Private Partnership Policy. His doctoral dissertation examined the history and development of the interstate highway system from its origins in the 1930s through its design and deployment in the 1960s and beyond.

Back episodes are available at the Podcast’s forever home, as well as on its anchor.fm home. The anchor.fm also has links to the podcast’s page on most major podcasting services.

Highway Headlines

  • Fisher Sand & Gravel Co. Reconstructs Highway in Mojave Desert (Construction Eqpt. Guide). U.S. Highway 395 is a priority interregional highway in the Caltrans Interregional Transportation Strategic Plan, part of the National Network of truck routes, and included in the Caltrans Highway Freight Network. “The highway is vital to the economy of the Eastern Sierra region and is one of five major recreational corridors identified for Southern California,” states the project web page. Crews from Fisher Sand & Gravel Co. began construction on the last stretch (12.5-mi., postmile 29.2 to postmile 41.8) of U.S. Highway 395 last January, to update this section to two lanes in each direction with a 10-ft. shoulder on each side.
  • Ramona officials urge Caltrans to repair intersection after two fatal collisions (Ramona Sentinel). The death of a 68-year-old Ramona woman in a Sept. 19 rollover crash has renewed calls for road improvements at the Mussey Grade Road and state Route 67 intersection. The intersection has been the site of two other serious accidents in recent months, including one in which a 90-year-old man died in a head-on collision that pushed his vehicle backward and into the path of another vehicle, and another that left a woman with serious injuries. The Sept. 19 collision occurred about 3:40 p.m. as the woman stopped her 2005 Dodge Ram on westbound Mussey Grade Road, then turned left onto south SR-67. When she made the turn, she drove into the path of a northbound 2004 Toyota Prius, which broadsided the pickup, said California Highway Patrol Officer Matthew Baranowski. The truck overturned and landed on its roof.
  • Caltrans to make safety improvements on stretch of State Route 36 (Times-Standard). Caltrans is planning safety improvements to reduce the frequency and severity of collisions on a two-mile stretch of State Route 36 between Hydesville and Carlotta. A public meeting to talk about the project’s environmental document and gather input from the community was held on Sept. 28 at Cuddeback Elementary School, and more than 50 people attended. “Our project team was encouraged by the community’s interest as they provided needed insight and information that we will incorporate into our design,” said Caltrans District 1 Project Manager Marie Brady. “The community also brought up other areas of interest, near and within the project limits, for further investigation, which is exactly what we look for when engaging with folks.”
  • Our Future 101 – Ventura County’s Highway 101 HOV Project (VCTC). Commuters? Travelers? No, it’s us, Ventura County drivers. We tend to use the 101 like a main street. We jump on the freeway to cross town to take our kids to school, go to the farmer’s market, and commute to and from work daily, within the county. There are few alternatives for the 101 and the improvements over the years have not kept up with the demands we place on the 101. Congestion is projected to more than double in the next 20 years. Fortunately, help is on the way. The Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC), working in partnership with Caltrans and the local cities and the County of Ventura, has taken the lead to identify improvements along this important connection to all we do.
  • Caltrans completes Dry Creek Bridge project (Yahoo!News). After more than two years of construction, the Dry Creek Bridge renovation project in Yuba County has been completed, offering drivers more space on a previously narrow road and bridge. Officials with Caltrans held a ribbon cutting ceremony on Thursday to commemorate the completion of the project on Highway 20 in Browns Valley, along with other road projects that concurrently developed. The Browns Valley project is the last of five major projects to be completed along Highway 20, said Caltrans Project Manager Johnny Tan. The five-mile section between Marysville Road and Timbuctoo Place was renovated and rehabilitated in order to provide wider lanes and shoulders to give commercial and recreational drivers more space to travel and pull off from the road.
  • Caltrans Breaks Ground on Chumash Museum Highway Beautification Project (Noozhawk). Caltrans broke ground this week on the Chumash Museum Highway Beautification project along a stretch of State Route 246 near Santa Ynez. The project is made possible through Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Clean California initiative, a sweeping, $1.2 billion, multiyear clean-up effort led by Caltrans to remove trash, create thousands of jobs and join with communities throughout the state to reclaim, transform and beautify public spaces. The $1.3 million Chumash Museum Highway Beautification project — the first of 12 Clean California-funded Central Coast beautification projects to break ground — will improve a half-mile section of the highway by installing artistic fencing, native plant landscaping, upgraded irrigation using recycled water, decorative crosswalks for pedestrians and bicyclists, and better directional signage.
  • PCH projects will protect vulnerable highway – Santa Monica Daily Press (Santa Monica Daily Press). Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) could be getting some much needed attention just north of Santa Monica with two Caltrans projects on the way that could shore up the delicate coastal thoroughfare. One of the projects dates back to 2016, when high surf swept away a portion of the highway’s shoulder, exposing a high pressure gas pipeline in the Tuna Canyon area not far from Malibu’s southern border.

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – September 2022

Sorry for the delay in getting this posted. The end of September has been busy. Combine the end of the government fiscal year (meaning work is busy), with a large number of theatre reviews to write up, with working to get Episode 1.04 of the California Highways – Route by Route podcast (Anchor.FM Home, with links to most major podcatching services) edited, with having ear surgery to remove a cholesteotoma that had developed, with working on the updates to the highway pages …. and, whew! So the headlines are a few days late. My apologies.

As I noted, I’ve been doing a lot of work on the podcast. One of the hardest parts is scaring up interviews. For the upcoming episodes, I’m looking for someone who is willing to talk for 30 minutes or so on the following:

  • For 1.05: The Pat Brown era of highway construction in California, and the rationale behind, and impact of, the 1964 “Great Renumbering” on the traveling public.
  • For 1.06: The impact of CEQA on road construction in California — including the process both before and after CEQA — as well as the impact of the growing importance of regional transportation agencies on the State Highway System.

If you or someone you know would be interested in helping this project, please contact me. Thanks to Jonathan Gifford of George Mason University for being our interviewee for Episode 1.04. Episode 1.04 should be posted around October 15.

With respect to the main highway pages: I’ve started work on incorporating the August headlines. That will be interrupted for the November 2022 ballot analysis, which should take 5 posts to complete (national/state officers, local officers, judges, measures, and a summary) as well as weekly theatre). Once I’m past the election post, I’ll finish up August and start the September headlines. The goal will be to have those updates done by November. Podcast scripts are written through 1.10; all that remains is the naming and transportation organizations episode.

Enough of this shameless self-promotion. Here are the headlines that I found about California’s highways for September:

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor.]

California Highways: Route by Route Podcast

  • California Highways: Route by Route logoCARxR Ep. 1.03: Building a State Highway System: The 1930s. In this episode, we’re continuing to explore the history of the State Highway System, focusing on the 1930s and the early 1940s. This is part of our first season of California Highways: Route by Route, where we are exploring the background needed for our route by route journal. In this episode, we’ll see the establishment of the legislative route system, the creation of state sign routes and the signage by the auto club, a major expansion of the state highway system, and continuing growth on the Federal side, laying the groundwork for the eventual interstates. This episode also features an interview with Morgan Yates, Archivist of the Auto Club of Southern California. During his interview, Morgan shared a picture of alternative state routing signs proposed by the ACSC (included here thanks to the auto club). You can write to Morgan at: Corporate Archivist; Automobile Club of Southern California; 2601 S. Figueroa St., MS H-118; Los Angeles, CA 90007.

Back episodes are available at the Podcast’s forever home, as well as on its anchor.fm home. The anchor.fm also has links to the podcast’s page on most major podcasting services.

Highway Headlines

  • California Senate Passes Safe Roads Bill, Putting Statewide Wildlife Connectivity Within Reach (Center for Biological Diversity). The California Senate passed the Safe Roads and Wildlife Protection Act on Monday in a 35-0 vote, paving the way for more wildlife crossings across the state’s roadway system. Assembly Bill 2344 now awaits approval from the governor after a concurrence vote in the Assembly, which it passed in May. “California lawmakers agree that it’s unacceptable for animals to be slaughtered on highways due to a lack of wildlife crossings,” said J.P. Rose, policy director at the Center for Biological Diversity’s Urban Wildlands program. “Wildlife crossings work, and mountain lions, desert tortoises and kit foxes deserve safe passage over the barriers we’ve created.” A.B. 2344 would require Caltrans to identify barriers to wildlife movement and prioritize crossings when designing new roads or making road improvements. The proposed legislation prioritizes crossing projects, which can be overpasses, underpasses, culverts and other infrastructure improvements, to prevent deadly wildlife-vehicle collisions.
  • Rio Vista Bridge back open after malfunction leaves it stuck in up position (CBS Sacramento). Highway 12 was blocked in both directions over the Sacramento River in Rio Vista after the bridge malfunctioned on Tuesday. According to Caltrans District 10, the bridge became stuck in the up position. The Rio Visa Fire Department tweeted that the bridge suffered a mechanical issue and that drivers would need to seek an alternative route. A ship had to anchor just north of the bridge because it too couldn’t get by. Operators say it costs owners $20,000 for every day that a vessel sits idle.
  • Metro’s 60 Freeway Ramps Expansion Project in Hacienda Heights Is on Hold (Streetsblog Los Angeles). An on-/off-ramp project in Hacienda Heights meant to preface future widening of the 60 and 605 Freeways has been postponed by Metro since the early pandemic. Metro deemed the Hacienda Heights SR-60/7th Avenue project beneficial to drivers and not overly adversely impacting adjacent residents, but if and when the project and the freeway widening are set in motion again, construction could come very close to homes. So what’s holding it back?
  • Metro FY23 Budget: Those Freeways Metro Plans to Widen (Streetsblog Los Angeles). Metro is spending more and more money widening freeways. Last year, Metro increased its annual freeway expansion budget by a whopping eighty percent. This year, the agency has proposed another 33.5 percent increase, on top of last year’s. At a time when equity, housing, and climate crises are bearing down on Angelenos, Metro is planning to worsen these crises by doubling down on freeway widening – growing its annual Highway Program budget from $264 million (in FY21) to a proposed $634 million in the year ahead (FY23).
  • Cosumnes bridge project along SR-99 wraps up two years early (ABC 10). The Cosumnes bridge replacement project on State Route 99 is complete. It started in fall 2019 and construction finished two years ahead of schedule, despite supply chain  issues. The $208.3 million project received nearly $106 million from Senate Bill 1, and more than $102 million came from the State Highway and Operation and Protection Program (SHOPP). State and local governments worked together to replace the Cosumnes River bridge and Overflow bridge with two new ones. They also replaced the McConnell overhead and made improvements to the Dillard Road overcrossing.

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – August 2022

As I write this, we’re in the middle of a heat wave in Southern California. The heat, summer weather, and monsoon season has caused all sorts of problems in the southern part of the state, including significant road washouts in Death Valley, along I-15, and along I-10. But through it all… I’ve been collecting headlines.

I’ve also been working on the California Highways Route by Route podcast. Episodes 1.01 and 1.02 are up. Ep 1.01 covers the state highway system before 1920, and features an interview with Adam Prince. Ep 1.02 discussed the highway system in the 1920s, and features an interview with Joel Windmiller of the Lincoln Highway Association. Both are available through the podcast’s home page, our page on anchor.fm, or through your favorite podcaster. Please spread the word on the podcast, write a review, and like it in your favorite podcaster. I’d like to see the listenership grow: as I write this, we have (through anchor.fm) 57 listens to the sample episode, 58 listens to ep 1.01, but only 32 to episode 1.02. So keep spreading the word. I’ve got 1.03, which features a long interview with the archivist of the Auto Club of Southern California, edited. I’ll upload it in mid-September.

I’m still looking for folks to interview for upcoming episodes. If you can help us find people to talk to, that would be great. Just let me know (comment here, or email daniel -at caroutebyroute -dot org. Here’s the list for the rest of the first season in terms of what I’m wanting in regard to interviews: 🎙 1.04: Someone to talk on the 1956 Interstate Highway Bill 🎙 1.05: Someone to talk on the impact of Pat Brown on highway construction in California and/or the impact of the great renumbering 🎙 1.06: Someone to talk on the impact of the California EQA act on highway construction 🎙 1.07: Someone to talk on how the state numbers state highways — in particular, anything official on numbering patterns, or the rules for signing things 🎙 1.08: Here I’d like someone to talk on the role of AASHTO on numbering US highways 🎙 1.09: This is Interstate numbering, so again an expert on Interstates — either numbering, the federal aid highway acts, or the chargeable/non-chargeable distinction 🎙 1.10: This is numbering of county highways, so anyone from a county public works department on the signed route system 🎙 1.11: A state legislator on highway naming resolutions 🎙 1.12: Someone from the California Transportation Commission on the role of the commission.  We’re also looking for a better theme song, so if you know of someone willing to write some short pieces for the show that we can use for free, that would be great.

With respect to the main highway pages: I should start work on the August / September / October updates shortly after the headlines are up. I’ll feel better about starting those updates once I have some of the podcast interviews lined up (podcast scripts are written through 1.09).

Enough of this shameless self-promotion. Here are the headlines that I found about California’s highways for August:

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor.]

Highway Headlines

  • Caltrans looking for feedback on Highway 46 widening project (KSBY NBC 6). Caltrans is continuing work to widen Highway 46, and they’re asking for the public’s input. The agency wants to hear from drivers, businesses, and people who live in Shandon and surrounding areas. The feedback will be used in the next phase of widening work. “Currently, we’re in the final phases of design for the Antelope Grade segment and what we’re trying to do is compile information from travelers and people in the area,” said Alexa Bertola, public information officer for Caltrans District 5.
  • Multiple Closures, Including Last U.S. Exit, on Eastbound SR-905 to Close Monday Night (Caltrans District 11). Caltrans crews will close Britannia Blvd off-ramp on Monday, August 8, from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. In addition, connectors from southbound SR-125 to eastbound SR-11 and eastbound SR-905 to eastbound SR-11 will close from August 9-11 from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. In addition, southbound SR-125 to eastbound SR-11 and eastbound SR-905 to eastbound SR-11 will close from August 9-11 from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. The project includes asphalt and pavement micro-surfacing, new thermoplastic striping, and upgraded wrong-way driver striping enhancements, at all ramps along SR-905 from San Ysidro to Otay Mesa, and will continue thru late September
  • Caltrans begins southbound expansion of Highway 99 (Turlock Journal). Caltrans District 10 has officially began the process of widening State Route 99 (SR-99) going southbound between Turlock and Livingston, adding a third lane for a nine-mile stretch. The southbound expansion is the second phase of a greater project that saw a similar highway widening going northbound from Livingston to Turlock, which took place from November 2019 to April 2021. The southbound widening will be completed within a similar timeframe, beginning this week with an expected finish in January 2024. Funds for the southbound project construction were designated in the 2018 State Transportation Improvement Program.
  • Upcoming construction work on SR-1 between Ledroit St. and Cajon St. (Orange County Breeze). The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is scheduled to resume work on Coast Highway (SR-1) between Ledroit St. and Cajon St. in the City of Laguna Beach. Construction is expected to begin Wednesday, August 10, 2022, through Thursday, September 1, 2022. The work will take place Monday through Friday nightly from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. Changeable Message Signs will be in place to notify motorists and residents of the upcoming work. Please note that noise from construction equipment during concrete pours or asphalt paving should be expected. This work, which started last Fall, is part of the Coast Highway ADA Sidewalk Improvement Project that will make the pedestrian routes along Coast Highway within the project limits ADA compliant. Construction will continue in the City of Laguna Beach at various locations between Ledroit St. and Ruby St.
  • Officials celebrate new freeway sound walls on 170 for NoHo and nearby neighborhoods (Metro – The Source). Metro today joined the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and other local and state officials to announce the completion of 5.4 miles of new sound walls along State Route 170 and Interstate 405 in the North Hollywood area of Los Angeles. The new $103-million sound wall project will bring freeway noise relief to the residents of North Hollywood, Valley Glen and Valley Village. Sound walls were completed specifically along State Route 170, from US 101 to Sherman Way, and along Interstate 405 from Saticoy Avenue to Roscoe Boulevard. The project also included the widening of eight bridges to support the sound walls without widening the lanes.

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🛣 Changes to the California Highway Website covering May – July 2022

This update covers the remainder of May that wasn’t covered in the April update, plus June and July. This took a bit longer, because I’ve also been working on getting our new podcast, California Highways: Route by Route up and running. You can visit the podcast’s forever home at https://www.caroutebyroute.org/ , or the show’s page on anchor.fm. A full sample episode and the first full episode (covering the history of California Highways through 1920) are already up. The next episode will be up shortly after these updates. Subscribe to the podcast in your favorite podcasting app or by using the RSS feed. Just search for “California Highways” and look for our logo. The podcast is a joint effort between me and Tom Fearer of Gribblenation. Our plan is to include interviews in each episode. Episode 1.01 includes an interview with Adam Prince on the Good Roads movement, and episode 1.02 will feature Joel Windmiller of the Lincoln Highway Association on the initial set of US highways in California. We’re looking for interviews for the remaining set of Season 1 episodes, as indicated. If you’ve got a lead on a speaker, please let me know.

  • California Highways Route by Route Podcast1.03: Building a State Highway System: The 1930s: An expert on the role of the Auto Club in signing highways
  • 1.04: Building a State Highway System: Expanding the System: Someone to talk on the 1956 Interstate Highway Bill
  • 1.05: Building a State Highway System: The Great Renumbering and New Freeways: Someone to talk on the construction boom of the 1960s and/or the impact of the great renumbering.
  • 1.06: Building a State Highway System: CEPA and Reality: Someone to talk on the impact of the California EPA act on highway construction
  • 1.07: Highway Numbering: State Highways: Someone to talk on how the state numbers state highways — in particular, anything official on numbering patterns, or the rules for signing things.
  • 1.08: Highway Numbering: US Highways: Here I’d like someone to talk on the role of AASHTO on numbering US highways
  • 1.09: Highway Numbering: Interstates: This is Interstate numbering, so again an expert on Interstates — either numbering, the federal aid highway acts, or the chargeable/non-chargeable distinction
  • 1.10: Highway Numbering: County Routes: This is numbering of county highways, so anyone from a county public works department on the signed route system
  • 1.11: The Naming of Highways: A state legislator on highway naming resolutions
  • 1.12: The Organizations of State Highways: Someone from the California Transportation Commission on the role of the commission.

Updates were made to the following highways, based on my reading of the (virtual) papers in May, June, and July 2022 (which are posted to the roadgeeking category at the “Observations Along The Road” and to the California Highways Facebook group) as well as any backed up email changes. I also reviewed the the AAroads forum (Ꜳ). This resulted in changes on the following routes, with credit as indicated [my research(ℱ), contributions of information or leads (via direct mail or ꜲRoads) from Gary Ansok(2)Concrete Bob(3), Gretl Davis(4), Paul DeRocco (pderocco)(5), Tom Fearer(6), Andy Field(7), Richard Lyon(8), Glen Norman(9)Plutonic Panda(10), Chris Sampang(11): Route 1(ℱ), Route 4(ℱ), I-5(ℱ), I-10(ℱ), Route 11(ℱ), Route 12(ℱ), Route 17(ℱ), Route 25(ℱ), Route 29(ℱ), Route 33(6), Route 35(ℱ), Route 37(ℱ), Route 41(ℱ), Route 55(ℱ), Route 58(7), Route 59(ℱ), US 66(6), Route 71(11), LRN 77(ℱ), LRN 78(ℱ), I-80(ℱ,4), US 80(6), Route 83(6), Route 90(6), Route 98(ℱ), Route 99(ℱ,6), US 101(ℱ,6), Route 120(ℱ), Route 125(ℱ), Route 140(ℱ), Route 148(3), Route 156(ℱ), Route 162(ℱ), Route 190(ℱ), Route 194(6),  I-205(ℱ), Route 206(6), Route 209(6), Route 212(6), Route 221(ℱ), Route 228(6), Route 236(ℱ), Route 262(9), Route 275(ℱ), Route 330(6), US 395(ℱ,5), Route 480(ℱ,6),  I-680(ℱ), I-710(ℱ,6,10), Route 905(ℱ), County Sign Route E9(8), County Sign Route G2(2).
(Source: private email, Highway headline posts through the July Headline post, AARoads through July 25, 2022)

Added a link to a crowdsourced map on the El Camino Real Bells. H/T to J. Scott Hayden for the link.

Reviewed the Pending Legislation page, based on the California Legislature site. As usual, I recommend to every Californian that they visit the legislative website regularly and see what their legis-critters are doing. As many people are unfamiliar with how the legislature operates (and why there are so many “non-substantive changes” and “gut and amend” bills), I’ve added the legislative calendar to the end of the Pending Legislation page. The following bills made it out of the process:

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – July 2022

Sorry for the delay in getting the July headlines up. I’ve been trying to get a set up updates to California Highways done, and had to finish working through the California Transportation Commission minutes before I could start on the headlines. I’ve also been trying to get the podcast going — more on that in a minute. So now I can turn my attention to the headlines from July.

But first, the California Highways Route by Route podcast. We have our first regular episode up, but still needs some more listens to catch up with the full sample episode. Anchor shows 51 listens to the sample (0.02), and 39 to the first episode (1.01). Please do your part. Subscribe in your favorite podcatcher, add our RSS feed, or listen through one of the Anchor feeds. The second episode is recorded and awaiting editing, and we’re planning on recording more soon. Subscribe now so you don’t miss a single episode.

We’re also plotting out the year. We need some good interview subjects, or leads for interviews. If you can help us find people to talk to, that would be great. Just let me know (comment here, or email daniel -at caroutebyroute -dot org. Here’s the list for the rest of the first season in terms of what I’m wanting in regard to interviews:

  • 1.03: An expert on the role of the Auto Club in signing highways
  • 1.04: Someone to talk on the 1956 Interstate Highway Bill
  • 1.05: Someone to talk on the construction boom of the 1960s and/or the impact of the great renumbering.
  • 1.06: Someone to talk on the impact of the California EPA act on highway construction
  • 1.07: Someone to talk on how the state numbers state highways — in particular, anything official on numbering patterns, or the rules for signing things.
  • 1.08: Here I’d like someone to talk on the role of AASHTO on numbering US highways
  • 1.09: This is Interstate numbering, so again an expert on Interstates — either numbering, the federal aid highway acts, or the chargeable/non-chargeable distinction
  • 1.10: This is numbering of county highways, so anyone from a county public works department on the signed route system
  • 1.11: A state legislator on highway naming resolutions
  • 1.12: Someone from the California Transportation Commission on the role of the commission.

We’re also looking for a better theme song, so if you know of someone willing to write some short pieces for the show that we can use for free, that would be great.

During July, I explored some of the desert highways: Route 62, Route 74, Route 111, Route 86. Where have you been exploring?

But you care about the headlines. So here are the headlines about California’s highways for July. The headline list seems to be getting smaller–I’m finding less articles about significant road work (I’m not that interested in simple resurfacing), and more articles about transit and rail. I think that’s the direction things are going currently: increase the number of people per vehicle on current roads (as opposed to capacity for more vehicles), and increase broader transit options. But here’s what I found:

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor. ]

Highway Headlines

  • Freeway marker honors late Fil-Am leader Alice Bulos (Inquirer.Net). Elizabeth Bulos Ramilo was driving to work on the morning of June 27 when a road sign grabbed her attention: ALICE PEÑA BULOS MEMORIAL FREEWAY. Ramilo had long known of state and local officials‘ efforts to honor her mother in perpetuity, but she was unaware the sign already had been installed on Skyline Boulevard. The South San Francisco resident said she was elated near tears to see the memorialization fulfilled.
  • California allocates more than $3 billion for transportation infrastructure (Orange County Breeze). The California Transportation Commission (CTC) allocated more than $3 billion to repair and improve transportation infrastructure throughout the state, including $1.3 billion in funding from the federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to support local projects and to protect local roads and bridges from extreme weather and natural disasters. Senate Bill (SB) 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, accounts for more than $930 million of the total funding. “The CTC’s decision to invest in our state highways while protecting city and county infrastructure will help make California’s roadways safer and more resilient one shovel, one project and one community at a time,” said Caltrans Director Tony Tavares. Projects approved in District 12 include:
  • Caltrans to stabilize eroded Highway 17 slope near Scotts Valley (East Bay Times). Millions in state transportation funds have been allocated to stabilize a slope on Highway 17 near Scotts Valley that eroded during a series of heavy rainstorms more than five years ago. The California Transportation Commission, as part of a $3 billion infrastructure package, has committed $4.4 million to the project located half a mile south of Sugarloaf Road near Scotts Valley. Caltrans has been the lead agency in designing repairs and after the project is put out to bid, it will administer construction which is planned to begin in December, according to Caltrans Spokesperson Kevin Drabinski.
  • Richards Boulevard / I-80 Interchange Improvements (City of Davis). This project will improve traffic operations and multimodal safety at the interchange by reconfiguring the ramps and adding a grade separated shared-use path. This project has existed in concept for many years, and has been working in parallel with the Caltrans Managed Lanes Project. The project will reconfigure the existing west bound I-80 on ramp, and off ramps to a “tight diamond” interchange, and construct a grade separated multi use path to cross the Richards Boulevard overpass. There will also be intersection improvements at Richards Boulevard, and Olive Drive, Eastbound I-80, and Research Park Drive. Once the “tight diamond” interchange improvements are complete, the project will permanently close the Westbound I-80 off ramp to Olive Drive.
  • Here comes Soscol Junction, Napa County’s biggest road project in years (Napa Valley Register). Drivers, prepare for the Soscol Junction Experience. This isn’t an amusement park ride. It’s Napa County’s largest road project in years, one that will turn a major, traffic-clogged intersection into a $54 million interchange, with construction to begin the week of July 18. Soscol Junction is where Highway 29, Highway 221 and Soscol Ferry Road converge near the Butler Bridge and Grapecrusher statue. It’s an entrance to Napa Valley’s world-famous wine country and a nerve center of the regional road system. It’s also a place where drivers might curse a congestion-creating traffic signal. The Soscol Junction project is designed to remove that signal and cut rush-hour delays there from several minutes to a matter of seconds. Drivers over the next few years will see dump trucks and bulldozers reshape the landscape. They’ll see Highway 29 elevated and made free-flowing. They’ll see two roundabouts created underneath to regulate Highway 221 and Soscol Ferry Road traffic.
  • Marin highway flooding projects get $30M from state (Marin I-J). As sea-level rise and flooding threaten to cut off Marin City from emergency services and block one of the busiest North Bay highways, the state Legislature and Gov. Gavin Newsom have allocated $30 million in the state budget to begin planning for defenses. The budget adopted on Tuesday provides $20 million to begin designing flood protections on Highway 37 and the Novato Creek Bridge. Another $10 million is for planning defenses for recurring flooding on Highway 101 that blocks the only road in and out of Marin City. “Living here in Marin we already know what our future looks like with the climate crisis,” said state Sen. Mike McGuire, who sits on the Senate transportation and budget committees. “Marin County is home to some of the most vulnerable highway corridors in the state.” Highway 37, the 21-mile link between Interstate 80 and Highway 101 near Novato, is used daily by nearly 50,000 commuters, many of them making their way to jobs in the North Bay.

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – June 2022 Supplemental

Have you ever wondered how I assemble these posts. I scan the headlines, sure, but then I bookmark them in my browser. Sometimes that is on my home machine, sometime at work.  I use a tool called Eversync to keep the bookmarks in the two browsers synchronized. Well, when I signed into work today, I discovered a whole bunch of links hadn’t been synchronized. They don’t appear to be from May or June (although a few are from July). So let’s do a catchup post of what the synchronizer missed.

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor. ]

Highway Headlines

  • It took decades, but the 5 Freeway from La Mirada to Santa Fe Springs now has 10 lanes (Whittier Daily News). More than 30 years in the making, the 5 Freeway now has 10 lanes — up from six — from the Orange County border to the 605 Freeway. Caltrans on Thursday, June 30, opened a carpool and a regular lane northbound from the Orange county line in La Mirada to Alondra Boulevard in Santa Fe Springs. This is the final segment of the $1.9 billion widening project that began late in 2011 with the Carmenita Road interchange. Discussions actually date back to 1989 when Caltrans originally proposed widening to 12 or 14 lanes that then would have taken three Santa Fe Springs council members’ homes as well as a then-proposed auto row. Neither ever happened.
  • Newsom announces freeway camera funding (KRON4). Amid a spate of freeway shootings, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced funding for a pilot program to strategically install some 200 closed-circuit television cameras on the state’s freeways, including at locations in Alameda and Contra Costa counties, according to a press release. “We are committed to ensuring the safety of our highways throughout California and to holding individuals accountable for brazen acts of violence perpetrated on our freeways,” Newsom stated. “Advanced CCTV cameras will serve to improve traffic safety and act as a tool to assist CHP with incredibly complex and in-depth investigations. We’re doubling down on our public safety investments and partnerships with law enforcement officials up and down the state to ensure Californians feel safe in their communities.”
  • California invests $700 million in transportation infrastructure (Action News). Hundreds of millions of dollars has been approved for infrastructure improvements to roads and bridges in Northern California and throughout the state. The California Transportation Commission (CTC) allocated $700 million for the work. More than a third of that, $272 million, comes from Senate Bill 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017. Projects approved in [Butte, Lassen, Trinity, Shasta, etc.] include:
  • Kiewit Tackles Draining, Grading Issues On I-80 in California (Construction Equipment Guide). Kiewit Infrastructure West Co. started work on the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the Solano Transportation Authority’s (STA) $93.7 million Interstate 80, Interstate 680 and State Route 12 Interchange Project 2A in August 2020 — an initiative that is improving and widening the eastbound SR 12 to EB I-80 connector in the I-80 corridor, as well as improving the connectivity between regionally significant destinations.
  • California Consulting Releases Municipal Grants for May 2022 (California City News). Within each topic section, grants are listed in order by deadline and those which are due continuously. If you are interested in any of the listed opportunities, please contact your Project Manager for more information or to begin your application today!

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🛣 Headlines About California Highways – June 2022

We’re now half way through 2022, and boy what a year it has been so far for almost anything but the highway. Highway news, if I perceive things right, has been lighter this year. You can see for yourself: just jump down to the headlines after my introductory prather.

As I said: It’s been a year so far. The news about COVID has been pushed to the background, but the disease is still around creating havoc. More folks I know are getting the disease; luckily being double-vaxed double-boosted is making it less severe. We’ve had the findings of the Jan 6 commission, which are gobsmacking, to say the least. We’ve had the decisions of the Supreme Court, which are equally gobsmacking. As Pete Seeger sang, “There is mean things happening in this land…”

But closer to home, it’s also been a year. I’ve got a cholesteatoma in my ear, meaning it is constantly stuffed and distracting (surgery looks to be early August). My wife is still dealing with being in a wheelchair after her fall last November; progress is slow. Weekends have been busy with theatre, and Tom has been busy with other stuff, so we haven’t had the chance to record more podcast episodes yet. We’re still looking for music for the show, and we’re also looking for experts for brief interviews related to episode topics.

So June has been a whirlwind. July may not be much better, with theatre every weekend and a week’s vacation.

But you don’t care about any of that, do you. You care about the headlines. So here are the headlines about California’s highways for June. The headline list seems to be getting smaller–I’m finding less articles about significant road work (I’m not that interested in simple resurfacing), and more articles about transit and rail. I think that’s the direction things are going currently: increase the number of people per vehicle on current roads (as opposed to capacity for more vehicles), and increase broader transit options. But here’s what I found:

Key

[Ħ Historical information |  Paywalls, $$ really obnoxious paywalls, and  other annoying restrictions. I’m no longer going to list the paper names, as I’m including them in the headlines now. Note: For paywalls, sometimes the only way is incognito mode, grabbing the text before the paywall shows, and pasting into an editor. ]

Highway Headlines

  • Routes 25 and 156 Roundabout (FB). Construction begins May 31 on Highway 25/156 roundabout. Construction of a roundabout at the intersection of State Routes 25 and 156 will begin May 31—immediately following the Memorial Day holiday, according to the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans).
  • $2.3B Union Station makeover takes another step forward (Urbanize LA). In a vote taken last week, the Metro Board of Directors approved a funding agreement with California High Speed Rail Authority for the initial phase of Union Station’s $2.3-billion makeover and expansion. The project, called Link Union Station, expands upon a longtime plan to construct run-through tracks at the southern end of the passenger rail hub, allowing trains to cross over the US-101 freeway. This would eliminate Union Station’s historic stub-end layout, which forces all trains to enter and exit through the five-track throat to the north of the station platforms.
  • You may commute over one of these structurally deficient bridges in California (KTLA). A recent inventory by the American Road and Transportation Builders Association took a look at structurally deficient bridges in California. Bad news is … there are a lot. The ARTBA, a trade group that represents road construction workers, said in its 2022 report that 5.8% of California’s bridges can be categorized as “structurally deficient.” That’s 1,493 bridges according to the group. And these aren’t bridges along dusty roads or in rural parts of the state. Many of the structurally deficient bridges get hundreds of thousands of crossing every day, according to the ARTBA.
  • Dr. Sally Ride Memorial Highway (FB). It was my honor to recognize the historic achievements, and Valley roots, of Dr. Sally Ride at today’s Assemblymember Jesse Gabriel dedication of a portion of the 101 as the “Dr. Sally Ride Memorial Highway”.
  • The ghosts of L.A.’s unbuilt freeways (Los Angeles Times). Maybe you can hear them whispering, as your tires hiss along freeway concrete: the almost-weres, the might-have-beens, the freeway ghosts of Los Angeles, the thoroughfares dreamed up, planned for, but never built. There are more — oh, so many more — than you might have wished or feared, even in the cloverleaf heart of Freeway L.A. The Whitnall Freeway, the Industrial Freeway, the Temescal Freeway, the Laurel and Topanga and Malibu Canyon freeways, the Sierra Freeway, and the legendary Beverly Hills Freeway, discarded like an unproduced screenplay when such stars as Lucille Ball and Rosalind Russell gave it a big N-O.
  • Caltrans gets $35 million to add bike lanes, replace traffic lights along PCH stretch (Orange County Register). From replacing traffic signals to constructing new bike lanes meant to keep cyclists safe, a handful of transportation upgrades are planned along Pacific Coast Highway from Newport Beach to the Orange-Los Angeles county line. Nearly $40 million was recently announced for the improvements. The Caltrans district in Orange County is expected to begin work starting next year on the projects that will span more than 20 miles of the scenic highway.

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