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Author Topic: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project  (Read 3467 times)

andy3175

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US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« on: November 05, 2014, 12:13:26 AM »

http://www.ksbw.com/news/blood-alley-no-more-highway-101-improvement-project-finishes/29376686 (dated 10/28/2014)

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One of the largest highway construction projects in Monterey County history is finally finished and authorities said drivers on the Central Coast are safer because of it. The three-year, $226-million Prunedale Improvement Project added interchanges and overpasses to Highway 101 from Salinas to Prunedale. This 13-mile stretch of Highway 101 is known to many locals as "Blood Alley." Between 60,000-80,000 vehicles travel on it every day.

Prunedale Improvement Project crews built:

-- An interchange at Crazy Horse Canyon Road in Prunedale

-- An undercrossing at Espinosa and Russell roads in Salinas

-- An overcrossing for Blackie Road and Reese Circle

-- A new lane for the existing San Miguel Canyon Road interchange

-- A concrete median barrier to divide southbound traffic from northbound

Drivers described getting on and off Highway 101 between Salinas and Prunedale as "downright scary" before improvements were made.

http://www.thecalifornian.com/story/news/2014/10/27/prunedale-highway-improvements-complete/18031801/

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Monterey County 2nd District Supervisor Lou Calcagno prepares to cut the ribbon celebrating the completion of the Prunedale Improvement Project for U.S. Highway 101 at a ceremony on Monday (10/27/2014) in Salinas. Begun in 2011, the project has constructed major operational and safety improvements including interchanges to address the safety and congestion issues within the Prunedale corridor. In general, left turn movements along U.S. 101 have been eliminated between the Boronda Road Interchange and the Crazy Horse Canyon Road Interchange.

http://www.montereyherald.com/localnews/ci_26811392/long-awaited-highway-101-project-prunedale-marks-completion

Quote
Monday's ribbon-cutting ceremony just north of Salinas marked the culmination of nearly four decades of effort by a range of elected officials, community leaders and transportation staff to push the highway safety and congestion project to completion. It represents the largest highway upgrade in county history.

While Highway 101 is a key access route for the area's major economic drivers ó agriculture and tourism ó state Sen. Bill Monning, D-Carmel, said the over-arching goal for the project was improving public safety for the 70,000 travelers who use it every day, noting the sheer volume of similar tragedies along the roadway and the solemn vow to avoid any more.

Monning lauded the "dogged leadership" of Supervisor Lou Calcagno, who is retiring this year after decades of advocacy on the project dating back to the 1980s, and called its completion a "lasting legacy to Lou's incredible leadership." State Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, called for a section of the highway to be named after the veteran county supervisor. ...

The project stretches 13 miles from south of Espinosa and Russell Roads in Salinas to Echo Valley and Crazy Horse Canyon Road in north Prunedale. It is fully operational several months early and under budget, according to Transportation Agency for Monterey County officials.

It includes new overpass interchanges at Sala Road and Crazy Horse-Echo Valley Roads, a new overpass at Blackie Road and Reese Circle, and a new underpass at Espinosa and Russell Roads, as well as a new lane on the San Miguel Canyon Road interchange, and other improvements.

It also includes a concrete median barrier, permanently excluding the hair-raising left-hand turns across Highway 101 for the length of the project.

With the recently completed Airport Boulevard interchange project and the soon-to-be completed San Juan Road interchange project, Highway 101 has now been the focus of more than $400 million in improvements in recent years.
« Last Edit: January 25, 2015, 04:19:12 AM by andy3175 »
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nexus73

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #1 on: November 05, 2014, 12:17:03 PM »

Finally!  CalTrans should have dealt with this section of 101 several decades ago.  Thanks for posting the good news Andy!

Rick
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US 101 is THE backbone of the Pacific coast from Bandon OR to Willets CA.  Industry, tourism and local traffic would be gone or severely crippled without it being in functioning condition in BOTH states.

TheStranger

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2018, 08:36:59 PM »

A postscript to this: the seeming official end to the originally-proposed Prunedale Bypass project in this area:

https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2017/10/15/a-disappointing-but-thoroughly-appropriate-end-to-the-prunedale-bypass/
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Chris Sampang

nexus73

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2018, 10:43:04 AM »

The Willets Bypass would have been built earlier but thanks to the not so fine folks in Sacramento, promises made became promises broken as funds for Willets got shifted elsewhere after the local/regional governments/agencies had gotten all their ducks in a row, only to see them shot down.

Given how much more dangerous the Prunedale section of 101 can be, like I posted almost 4 years ago, it is surprising this hazardous highway was not dealt with decades ago.

Rick
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US 101 is THE backbone of the Pacific coast from Bandon OR to Willets CA.  Industry, tourism and local traffic would be gone or severely crippled without it being in functioning condition in BOTH states.

sparker

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2018, 12:19:23 PM »

I remember seeing the cute little dotted lines on the state highway map -- in squares, indicating an adopted route, east of the present US 101 as early as '65 -- and for years wondered why that bypass segment was never constructed.  Turns out there were enough business owners in the area where 101 is multiplexed with CA 156 who simply didn't want to be bypassed -- so an in situ configuration, essentially performing periodic "spot" fixes, was deployed.  According to the article cited here, what's on the ground today is the sum total of all those fixes; whether this will make the road more efficient in addition to the safety aspects of the work is yet to be seen.  I'll probably venture down that way in the next couple of weeks just to see for myself what's been done and how it looks and functions; if it's a half-assed job, you'll be the first to know!   
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2018, 04:53:26 PM »

I remember seeing the cute little dotted lines on the state highway map -- in squares, indicating an adopted route, east of the present US 101 as early as '65 -- and for years wondered why that bypass segment was never constructed.  Turns out there were enough business owners in the area where 101 is multiplexed with CA 156 who simply didn't want to be bypassed -- so an in situ configuration, essentially performing periodic "spot" fixes, was deployed.  According to the article cited here, what's on the ground today is the sum total of all those fixes; whether this will make the road more efficient in addition to the safety aspects of the work is yet to be seen.  I'll probably venture down that way in the next couple of weeks just to see for myself what's been done and how it looks and functions; if it's a half-assed job, you'll be the first to know!

Itís basically just engineered to the fullest extent it can be without being a freeway.  The Center turn lanes that were present on 101/156 in Prunedale are now a solid barrier.  The businesses would be served way better with less traffic from a bypass or frontage roads.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2018, 04:01:06 PM »

A postscript to this: the seeming official end to the originally-proposed Prunedale Bypass project in this area:

https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2017/10/15/a-disappointing-but-thoroughly-appropriate-end-to-the-prunedale-bypass/
That article is almost a year old!

Is this bypass needed? Iíve only drove through here a few times. Traffic was not bad but Iím sure it being in California is very decieving.
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Max Rockatansky

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2018, 04:13:16 PM »

A postscript to this: the seeming official end to the originally-proposed Prunedale Bypass project in this area:

https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2017/10/15/a-disappointing-but-thoroughly-appropriate-end-to-the-prunedale-bypass/
That article is almost a year old!

Is this bypass needed? Iíve only drove through here a few times. Traffic was not bad but Iím sure it being in California is very decieving.

Itís not bad, but it is an old expressway alignment that replaced the San Juan Grade in the 1930s.  The worst part about the 101/156 multiplex is the crappy ramps that 156 branches off from.  The ramp for westbound 156 onto 101 south is especially crash prone. 
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sparker

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Re: US 101 Prunedale Improvement Project
« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2018, 09:41:55 PM »

A postscript to this: the seeming official end to the originally-proposed Prunedale Bypass project in this area:

https://voicesofmontereybay.org/2017/10/15/a-disappointing-but-thoroughly-appropriate-end-to-the-prunedale-bypass/
That article is almost a year old!

Is this bypass needed? Iíve only drove through here a few times. Traffic was not bad but Iím sure it being in California is very decieving.

Itís not bad, but it is an old expressway alignment that replaced the San Juan Grade in the 1930s.  The worst part about the 101/156 multiplex is the crappy ramps that 156 branches off from.  The ramp for westbound 156 onto 101 south is especially crash prone. 

The improved section multiplexed with CA 156 serves multiple duties; there's not only the throughput traffic on US 101, the daily commute traffic down that stretch toward the less costly housing development in the Salinas area, tourist/weekend traffic to the Monterey Peninsula from Bay points, but also considerable traffic from the San Joaquin Valley; a lot of well-off folks in Fresno, Merced, and other Valley cities have second houses in Carmel or Pacific Grove, traveling west on Friday evenings and back on Sunday evenings or Monday mornings -- particularly in summer, when they're looking to escape the heat.  Add to that the commercial traffic conveying goods to the Peninsula, or even periodic agricultural loads from the Castroville area.  All that funnels through that stretch of 101/156, and it can back up like any other overworked 4-lane highway.  Any improvement is welcome; the original planned bypass to the east would have been a godsend -- but for various reasons over the years just didn't happen. 
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