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Author Topic: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects  (Read 6517 times)

relaxok

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101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« on: September 03, 2014, 01:05:35 AM »

Does anybody else have any inside info on the future of the widening of US-101 between Marin and Sonoma county (CA)?

http://roadwarrior.blogs.pressdemocrat.com/tag/marin-sonoma-narrows/

.. has a bunch of info, but I'm still utterly bewildered. The traffic in the 2-lane segment is absolutely HORRIFIC.  The current thought seems to be they need to spend untold hundreds of millions and years to get the entire region up to freeway status, so that it can then start begging for (nearly nonexistent) federal funding to actually begin solving the problem.   

I cannot believe that this section of highway has been neglected for so long, especially in an area with so much money and so much desperate need for expanding the commuter corridor of San Francisco.

Instead it seems a ton of money got thrown at http://main.sonomamarintrain.org/ -- sure, a fun little idea considering the tracks already exist and are dormant, but it seems like a tax proposition for finishing 101 would have a lot more support.
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mapman

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2014, 09:29:19 PM »

You can try the link below for more information.  Caltrans also used to have some documents here about the project, but I can't find then there anymore.   :confused:

http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist4/msn
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nexus73

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2014, 11:19:38 AM »

I always found CalTrans a slow moving agency when it came to 101 projects.  Blood Alley in Prunedale, the Narrows, 101 between Eureka/Arcata...all should have been upgraded 40 or more years ago.  The slip-sliding section south of Crescent City is an on-going issue that should have resulted in a bypass a long time ago.  Heck, if you pay all my expenses, I'll give you a tour of 101 and show you the problems that got spaced off when California was doing good.  Silly CalTrans!  Silly government in Sacramento!  Now they play the broakphuk card but as they do the paperwork shuffle BS the costs climb and climb and climb while time delays...delays...delays result in stuff like the new tunnels south of Pacifica on SR 1 taking THIRTY freakin' years to go from start to finish.

Only in California...LOL!

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: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2014, 11:41:51 AM »

I always found CalTrans a slow moving agency when it came to 101 projects.  Blood Alley in Prunedale, the Narrows, 101 between Eureka/Arcata...all should have been upgraded 40 or more years ago.

With regards to 101 up north - didn't Eureka basically block any CalTrans attempt at bypassing the city?

   Now they play the broakphuk card but as they do the paperwork shuffle BS the costs climb and climb and climb while time delays...delays...delays result in stuff like the new tunnels south of Pacifica on SR 1 taking THIRTY freakin' years to go from start to finish.

Keep in mind that CalTrans wanted to build a freeway bypass of the Devil's Slide area for a long time before local voters basically pushed them into the tunnel option in 1995.  It still took another 15 years before said tunnel pairing was completed.
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Chris Sampang

nexus73

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2014, 04:33:47 PM »

The story I know about Eureka is that CalTrans had a tunnel concept for 101 back in the day.  Those folks didn't want anything going on.  What I am talking about is the expressway section between Eureka and Arcata BTW.  Currently it looks like 2019 for something to Finally Get Done.  Sheesh. 

Taking 15 years to twiddle thumbs would draw a head-chopping of those assigned to a project if I ran things, then adding another 15 years to build a couple of tunnels with their accompanying bridges and a bit of roadway shows how ridiculous the whole process is.  If we had built the Alcan Highway with all the present rigamarole we would all be speaking Japanese over here on the West Coast.  Instead it was "git 'er done" time and the entire route was finished in less than a year.  Yet another reason to call the adults of that time "The Greatest Generation".

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: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #5 on: September 05, 2014, 11:41:16 AM »

Taking 15 years to twiddle thumbs would draw a head-chopping of those assigned to a project if I ran things, then adding another 15 years to build a couple of tunnels with their accompanying bridges and a bit of roadway shows how ridiculous the whole process is.  If we had built the Alcan Highway with all the present rigamarole we would all be speaking Japanese over here on the West Coast.  Instead it was "git 'er done" time and the entire route was finished in less than a year.  Yet another reason to call the adults of that time "The Greatest Generation".

As much as I am gung ho on road projects (ESPECIALLY because of the red tape and obstacles that those now face here in California), I also am cognizant of what gets in the way of quick completion:

- EIRs
- protest from locals (i.e. 1950s-present South Pasadena) and outsiders (Willits bypass, which seems to be supported locally over there, but due to an environmental dispute has been the target of several oppositional news pieces from the ABC affiliate in SF)
- lack of budget

Very different atmosphere from the highway-construction boom of the 1940s-1960s.
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Chris Sampang

kkt

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2014, 01:05:50 PM »

What you're seeing on the California north coast is not Caltrans being slow, it's a deeply divided population.  Some of them want better access for more shipping, more tourists, etc.  But a lot want to stay a country backwater, and the price for that is slow roads and traffic delays to the big cities.  It's hard to say either side is wrong.
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MaxConcrete

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2014, 03:10:38 PM »

I cannot believe that this section of highway has been neglected for so long, especially in an area with so much money and so much desperate need for expanding the commuter corridor of San Francisco.

It seems to me that California should be making greater use of toll roads for critical projects which can't get funded. If it is going to take 20 to 30 years for certain projects to be built, you could potentially get the road built and paid for in that same time period, ultimately making it a free road in the same amount of time. For example, the Route 152 project near San Jose would be a good candidate.

I don't like toll roads, which is especially painful because I'm in Texas which is being transformed into the toll road capital of America. I wouldn't wish that future on any other state.

But toll roads can be part of a solution plan for chronic congestion. In addition, it is easier to get toll roads built because
1. They don't use traditional public funds, which make it more difficult for political opposition to block the project
2. Opposition is less intense because the opposition likes the fact that motorists using the highway are paying for the privilege
3. Surplus revenue can be used and abused by politicians, which gives politicians more incentive to get it built. (Unfortunately, toll road revenue is abused in both Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth, and the New York/New Jersey area is legendary for diverting toll revenue.)

For example, look at state route 73 in Orange County or the Inter-County connector in Maryland, projects which were nearly miracles to actually get built and could only be done as toll roads.

relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2015, 11:55:01 PM »

A significant amount of work on this project has been done.  They've made a frontage road across most of this distance and rebuilt several bridges.  It looks like they have eliminated most of the not up-to-freeway-standards exits too, other than the very first one by the gas station south of Petaluma.  I wonder how many more years before it'll be fully freeway and can get federal funds.  They have widened a few miles north from Novato in the NB direction but it really needs 3 lanes between Novato and Petaluma in both directions.

Meanwhile the SMART train is on target and very far along.  It will be interesting to see if it clears up some traffic.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2015, 11:58:20 PM by relaxok »
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DeaconG

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2015, 10:37:09 AM »

I cannot believe that this section of highway has been neglected for so long, especially in an area with so much money and so much desperate need for expanding the commuter corridor of San Francisco.

It seems to me that California should be making greater use of toll roads for critical projects which can't get funded. If it is going to take 20 to 30 years for certain projects to be built, you could potentially get the road built and paid for in that same time period, ultimately making it a free road in the same amount of time. For example, the Route 152 project near San Jose would be a good candidate.

I don't like toll roads, which is especially painful because I'm in Texas which is being transformed into the toll road capital of America. I wouldn't wish that future on any other state.

But toll roads can be part of a solution plan for chronic congestion. In addition, it is easier to get toll roads built because
1. They don't use traditional public funds, which make it more difficult for political opposition to block the project
2. Opposition is less intense because the opposition likes the fact that motorists using the highway are paying for the privilege
3. Surplus revenue can be used and abused by politicians, which gives politicians more incentive to get it built. (Unfortunately, toll road revenue is abused in both Houston and Dallas-Fort Worth, and the New York/New Jersey area is legendary for diverting toll revenue.)

For example, look at state route 73 in Orange County or the Inter-County connector in Maryland, projects which were nearly miracles to actually get built and could only be done as toll roads.

Texas may be the toll road capital but Florida is catching up quick...
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Occidental Tourist

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2015, 06:35:30 PM »

For example, look at state route 73 in Orange County or the Inter-County connector in Maryland, projects which were nearly miracles to actually get built and could only be done as toll roads.

Local governments may be leery of toll roads.  The 73 Toll Road has been a financial disaster, falling below revenue projections and dragging the 241 Toll Road with it after the toll agency refinanced the bonds and combined the debts of the two roads to stave off insolvency.
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andy3175

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #11 on: November 21, 2015, 01:35:43 AM »

Didn't realize eminent domain was involved in the widening of US 101 near the landfill...

http://www.californiaeminentdomainreport.com/2013/02/articles/court-decisions/interesting-valuation-dispute-in-caltrans-eminent-domain-battle/

Quote
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the owner of Silveira Ranch are involved in an interesting valuation dispute stemming from Caltrans’ acquisition of part of the ranchland needed for Highway 101 improvements.  According to an article in the Marin Independent Journal, Judge gives state a nod in Silveira ranch eminent domain case, the parties disagree on the property’s highest and best use, and as a result, they are widely off on their valuation opinions.  Caltrans has offered the owner $1.8 million for the acquisition, while the owner is demanding $6 million.

The article reports that the Superior Court has issued a tentative ruling indicating that the property owner’s valuation is inflated and fails to demonstrate that it is the probable amount of compensation that will be awarded.  The attorneys are to submit final arguments before a February 22 hearing, a week prior to Caltrans’ scheduled date for construction of the $29.7 million Redwood Landfill interchange improvement project.

http://www.jdsupra.com/legalnews/caltrans-highway-101-overpass-54520/

Quote
For several years, we’ve been following an eminent domain lawsuit in Marin County involving Caltrans’ acquisition of 34 acres for a $29.7 million interchange project at the Redwood Sanitary Landfill, which would widen the overpass over Highway 101 and install new frontage roads on both sides of the highway to create safer conditions for traffic going in and out of the landfill.  After a 20-day trial, the litigation has finally ended with a jury verdict that appears to be close to a split between the property owner’s appraisal and Caltrans’ appraisal.

According to an article in the Marin Independent Journal, Marin jury awards rancher $3.2 million for land seized in Novato, Caltrans’ appraisal was $575,000, and the owner’s appraisal was $6 million.  The jury returned a verdict at $3.2 million, which equaled about $1.7 million for the part-taken, and $1.5 million in severance damages to the remaining property as a result of the project. ...

Prior to trial, Caltrans apparently offered $1.8 million as a “final offer”.  Because the jury verdict was significantly above Caltrans’ final offer, the owner may be entitled to litigation expenses, including reimbursement of attorneys’ fees and expert fees, if the owner’s final demand was reasonable.
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Milliontown

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #12 on: November 22, 2015, 10:07:17 PM »

What you're seeing on the California north coast is not Caltrans being slow, it's a deeply divided population.  Some of them want better access for more shipping, more tourists, etc.  But a lot want to stay a country backwater, and the price for that is slow roads and traffic delays to the big cities.  It's hard to say either side is wrong.

Tha's exactly what's going on, and is my conclusion too.
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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #13 on: November 24, 2015, 08:40:51 PM »

Didn't realize eminent domain was involved in the widening of US 101 near the landfill...

Me either, til reading your post!

In fact, I never knew Silveira Ranch existed until they named the newly built exit after it!

$3.2 million for 34 acres of agriculturally-zoned land seems pretty steep to me but hey, whatever gets this built.  It's my commute =D
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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2017, 02:08:53 AM »

The amount of work being done on this stretch is nuts.  They are moving all 4 lanes over about 100 feet and up the hill in one area, on top of building a new bridge.  The work is soooo slow though.
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jeffe

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #15 on: August 14, 2017, 05:06:53 AM »

The amount of work being done on this stretch is nuts.  They are moving all 4 lanes over about 100 feet and up the hill in one area, on top of building a new bridge.

Yeah, there is a lot of earthwork going on here. 

However, not all four lanes are being moved over.  What you are seeing being constructed to the west of the existing roadway is a frontage road and two new southbound lanes.  The current southbound lanes will become northbound 101 and the existing northbound lanes will be a frontage road for the east side of the freeway.

Coming up will be another project to add HOV lanes to 101 between the Marin/Sonoma County line and the Petaluma Boulevard interchange.  This is currently slated to be advertised on 13 November 2017.
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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2017, 12:00:16 AM »

The amount of work being done on this stretch is nuts.  They are moving all 4 lanes over about 100 feet and up the hill in one area, on top of building a new bridge.

Yeah, there is a lot of earthwork going on here. 

However, not all four lanes are being moved over.  What you are seeing being constructed to the west of the existing roadway is a frontage road and two new southbound lanes.  The current southbound lanes will become northbound 101 and the existing northbound lanes will be a frontage road for the east side of the freeway.

Coming up will be another project to add HOV lanes to 101 between the Marin/Sonoma County line and the Petaluma Boulevard interchange.  This is currently slated to be advertised on 13 November 2017.

Interesting, thanks.

Do you know if they are doing the work such that widening to 3 lanes in each direction will be 'easy'?  Like is the bridge 6 lanes?
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sparker

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #17 on: August 15, 2017, 01:36:15 AM »

The amount of work being done on this stretch is nuts.  They are moving all 4 lanes over about 100 feet and up the hill in one area, on top of building a new bridge.

Yeah, there is a lot of earthwork going on here. 

However, not all four lanes are being moved over.  What you are seeing being constructed to the west of the existing roadway is a frontage road and two new southbound lanes.  The current southbound lanes will become northbound 101 and the existing northbound lanes will be a frontage road for the east side of the freeway.

Coming up will be another project to add HOV lanes to 101 between the Marin/Sonoma County line and the Petaluma Boulevard interchange.  This is currently slated to be advertised on 13 November 2017.

Interesting, thanks.

Do you know if they are doing the work such that widening to 3 lanes in each direction will be 'easy'?  Like is the bridge 6 lanes?

From what I've heard & read, the 101 freeway through the Narrows will be configured similarly to CA 87 in San Jose -- a 2+1 arrangement, with the center lane being HOV-only during the commute hours.  As design aspects of most urban/suburban non-Interstate freeways in this part of California have largely devolved to the local MPO's, there is a definite reluctance to provide more than 2 general-purpose lanes per direction; any more would be deemed a capacity increase, which is contrary to most area MPOs' current policies.  And since the project's north end is the Petaluma Blvd. exit -- south of the Petaluma River bridge -- the bridge is probably being addressed by a separate contract (if indeed it's being expanded/revamped concurrently with the cited segment to the south); I've yet to come across specific plans for the bridge.       
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jeffe

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2017, 05:00:06 AM »

Do you know if they are doing the work such that widening to 3 lanes in each direction will be 'easy'?  Like is the bridge 6 lanes?

Yes, the bridge over San Antonio Creek at the Marin/Sonoma County Line will be wide enough for six lanes; two mixed flow and one HOV lane each way.  The realigned section north and south of this bridge will also be the same width and will have a concrete median barrier.

This realigned section will be about 2 miles long; too short to have a third lane start and then stop.  Therefore, the roadway will initially be striped to have two 12 foot lanes with 10 foot outside shoulder and a 22 foot inside shoulder in each direction.  This inside shoulder will allow for a future conversion to a 12 foot lane and a 10 foot inside shoulder.

The inside shoulder will have diagonal striping on it to prevent people from driving on it.  I believe these stripes are specified as paint, rather than thermoplastic, to allow for easier removal in the future.  The HOV lane on 101 in San Rafael between Sir Francis Drake and I-580 was added in a similar fashion -- initially constructed as a hashed off inside shoulder until the surrounding segments of the HOV lane were ready to be opened.  However, in that case, thermoplastic stripes were used, so when you drive in the HOV lane today you can feel the ruts where the old diagonal stripes were ground off the roadway.

As you've probably noticed, the replacement Petaluma Bridge was constructed in a similar fashion.  The bridge and approach all the way to the Kastania overcrossing are wide enough for 3 lanes each way, but only striped for 2.

The November 2017 project I mentioned above will replace the dirt median between the realigned section and the Kastania overcrossing with a paved median and concrete barrier.  The Petaluma Bridge and the San Antonio Bridge will then be restriped to three lanes each way.



And since the project's north end is the Petaluma Blvd. exit -- south of the Petaluma River bridge -- the bridge is probably being addressed by a separate contract (if indeed it's being expanded/revamped concurrently with the cited segment to the south); I've yet to come across specific plans for the bridge.     
The plans for the San Antonio Creek bridge are here: http://www.dot.ca.gov/des/oe/weekly-ads/plans.php?id=04-264094.  The Petaluma River bridge is already wide enough for an HOV lane in each direction.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2017, 05:02:09 AM by jeffe »
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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #19 on: April 06, 2018, 02:25:09 AM »

I can't believe how long this is taking.  There was an interview with the head of Ghilotti Brothers IN NOVEMBER saying that the new san antonio creek bridge would be open 'by January' if the weather cooperated.  There was almost no rain during that entire stretch.  The bridge is still nowhere close to being done that I can tell.  I actually wondered if the author of the article in question misspoke.

The Caltrans pages on this project are woefully out of date, too, no way to tell what's going on.
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jeffe

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2018, 02:53:45 AM »

There was an interview with the head of Ghilotti Brothers IN NOVEMBER saying that the new san antonio creek bridge would be open 'by January' if the weather cooperated. 

According to this article from the Marin IJ, the southbound lanes should be shifted to the new bridge during the week of April 9.

After the traffic is on the new southbound alignment, it will allow for the old southbound lanes to be removed and new northbound lanes to be constructed.  The northbound lanes should be completed by the end of 2018.

EDIT:
I just saw this Caltrans update stating that the traffic shift will happen late night on Saturday, April 14 and reopen on Sunday, April 15.

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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #21 on: April 20, 2018, 09:59:39 PM »

There was an interview with the head of Ghilotti Brothers IN NOVEMBER saying that the new san antonio creek bridge would be open 'by January' if the weather cooperated. 

According to this article from the Marin IJ, the southbound lanes should be shifted to the new bridge during the week of April 9.

After the traffic is on the new southbound alignment, it will allow for the old southbound lanes to be removed and new northbound lanes to be constructed.  The northbound lanes should be completed by the end of 2018.

EDIT:
I just saw this Caltrans update stating that the traffic shift will happen late night on Saturday, April 14 and reopen on Sunday, April 15.



Indeed the southbound lanes of the new bridge are open!

People are driving incredibly slowly with the new traffic pattern.  I have to say it seems like a lot of work and time and money considering the end result.   It's just slightly higher than before.

Every soundbite I heard was people talking about how the road flooding is a big problem ("every time it rains", etc.) and how it HAD to be done.   I've commuted that stretch every day for 7 years and it flooded one day during that time.  I know the old bridge was aging too but man...  Meanwhile 37 was closed for WEEKS because of flooding and they think they won't get around to dealing with that for 50 years.

I also don't really feel too confident in their timeline for finishing the northbound side before the end of the year.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2018, 10:02:27 PM by relaxok »
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relaxok

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #22 on: June 18, 2018, 06:52:08 PM »

With the Bay Area bridge toll increases and other stuff going on, lots of potential funding here:

http://www.northbaybusinessjournal.com/northbay/sonomacounty/8407155-181/sonoma-solano-marin-road-construction

The highlight:

“For the Sonoma-Marin Narrows, if funding is available from RM 3 and SB 1 then work in the Petaluma area will begin in 2019, and in Marin in 2020, with all work completed by 2023,” she said.

Smith said the Petaluma phase for completing the expansion of the Highway 101 segment south from Highway 116 to the Marin County line is about a year or more ahead of the remaining work in Marin when it comes to readiness, and she expects it to stay that way as funding is made available.

Funding has already been obtained to add north-south HOV lanes, creating a six-lane highway on Highway 101 from the Petaluma River Bridge and Lakeville Highway (Highway 116) north to the start of the carpool lane near the Penngrove exit. This upgrade will add north/south HOV lanes creating a six-lane highway. The budget for the Petaluma segment is $122 million. The SCTA said $37 million in local funds is available, plus $85 million from SB 1.

This North Petaluma project will go out for bid in Spring 2019, with construction expected to start next summer. This expanded highway segment is predicted to open for travel in 2022. The Marin Highway 101 segment from the county line south to Novato will start about one year later. The estimate for the Marin Highway 101 expansion is about $120M, Smith said.

Marin County has committed funds for the design phase and the RM 3 total includes $120M. Highway 101 HOV lane expansion in both directions from Highway 116 south to the Marin County line is funded. It is estimated that Highway 101 from Petaluma to north of Novato could be finished by 2023."

Personally, if that timeline is kept to, I will dance a jig of joy.

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kkt

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #23 on: June 18, 2018, 07:23:11 PM »

Personally, if that timeline is kept to, I will dance a jig of joy.

Me too, right after I woke from my faint.
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jeffe

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Re: 101 Marin-Sonoma Narrows Projects
« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2018, 12:08:18 AM »

According to the 12 month look-ahead, the section of 101 between CA-116 and Penngrove should go out to bid on February 15:

Quote
Location: Sonoma, 101 Postmile 4 to Postmile 7.1
Description: CONSTRUCT HOV LANES INCLUDING SOUND WALLS, BRIDGES, MEDIAN AND RAMP WIDENING
Roadway Estimate: $45,450,000
Bridge Estimate: $25,155,000
Proposed Advertise Date: 02/15/2019
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