SAN DIEGO–The California Transportation Commission awarded an additional $312 million in Senate Bill 1 (SB 1) funds this week during its regular monthly meeting held in San Diego, benefiting multiple transportation projects overseen by Caltrans, SANDAG, transit agencies, and county and city governments throughout the region.
Local leaders gathered during a news conference overlooking a downtown San Diego freeway to outline how the funds will be spent.
Local and state leaders attending the event were: Laurie Berman, Caltrans director; Senator Toni Atkins, President Pro-Tem, California State Senate; Senator Ben Hueso, District 40; Assemblymember Todd Gloria, District 78; San Diego City Councilmember Georgette Gomez, District 9; Chair, Metropolitan Transit System; Encinitas City Councilmember Tony Kranz, Boardmember, North County Transit District; San Diego County Supervisor Greg Cox, District 1; Rafael Castellanos, Chair, Port of San Diego; Chief Jim Abele, California Highway Patrol; Duane Friel, Operating Engineers, Local 12, and Christine Kehoe, board member, California Transportation Commission.
The funds will be used to reduce congestion along Interstate 5 in North County; improve local streets and roads in the region’s 18 cities and the County of San Diego; make freight and mobility improvements along the U.S. Mexico border; improve and enhance equipment and operation of the San Diego Metropolitan Transit System Trolley lines; continue to double track the freight and passenger North County Transit District rail line along the coastal corridor; make environmental improvements at the Port of San Diego freight terminals in San Diego and National City, and enhance bike and walk ways.
Funding for the projects was made possible by the 2017 passage of SB 1, which increased the state gas tax to fund transportation projects throughout the state.
Since its passage, the gas tax has provided more than $860 million to the region.
In the most recent $312 million award, a major Caltrans/SANDAG project to reduce congestion along the North Coast Corridor of Interstate 5 (Build NCC) received $195 million for construction of carpool lanes and other improvements. Build NCC is a state, local and federal partnership that includes adding carpool lanes, replacing highway and rail bridges, restoring the San Elijo Lagoon, and building new local and regional bike and pedestrian trails.
The California-Mexico Border System Project also was awarded $82 million to help improve cross-border commerce and mobility at the busiest commercial land port in California.
These regional transportation projects also received funds for the $10.5 million Sorrento to Miramar Double Track Project (SANDAG); $12.5 million for the Citracado Parkway Transportation Connections (City of Escondido); $6 million for Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal and National City Marine Terminal (Port of San Diego), and $6 million for the Otay Mesa Truck Route (City of San Diego).
SB 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, is expected to invest $54 billion over the next decade to fix roads, freeways and bridges throughout California, as well as improve transit and safety.