The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) broke ground last Fall on the Pacific Coast Highway Sidewalk ADA Improvement Project in Orange County. The $11.3 million project includes $7.2 million from Senate Bill (SB) 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017. This construction project will bring the cities of Laguna Beach and Newport Beach, which are visited by many people from across California, the U.S. and the world, up to date with ADA Compliant curb ramps and much needed pavement repair.
“Highway 1 is a main street in the cities of Newport Beach and Laguna Beach, and this important project will improve accessibility for residents and visitors, no matter how they travel,” said Caltrans Director Toks Omishakin. “Through SB 1, Caltrans is fixing our aging infrastructure and improving travel here in Orange County and throughout California.”
The project will have a significant environmental impact on the community and improve the durability of the pavement along a stretch of Highway 1. By removing the existing pavement and replacing it with rubberized asphalt, which is composed of rubber scraps from old tires, the number of old tires in landfills will be reduced. Other benefits include, noise reduction of up to 80%, less surface cracking, and longer life span.
The City of Laguna Beach experiences high pedestrian volumes and will benefit from the reconstruction of the existing curb ramps and driveways. The project will also widen the sidewalk, add audible pedestrian street crossing systems and will retrofit non-compliant ADA curb ramps to comply with ADA requirements. The project limits will stretch from Ruby Street to Ledroit Street on State Route 1 in the City of Laguna Beach.
Also, in its final stages is the PCH Rehabilitate Pavement Project in the cities of Newport Beach and Laguna Beach. Caltrans rehabilitated 4.2 miles of Asphalt Concrete pavement along State Route 1 from South of Vista Del Sol to 7th Avenue and from Ledroit Street to Newport Coast Drive. Crews installed vehicle detection loops at several locations, which will help adjust traffic light timing at intersections to keep traffic flowing. Additionally, the project will improve curb ramps and guardrails which will positively influence safety and well-being of both pedestrians and motorists.
“These construction projects taking place in Laguna Beach and Newport Beach enhance safety of all road users, including those who walk, bike, drive, ride transit, and travel by other modes,” said Caltrans District 12 Director Ryan Chamberlain. “We have a lot of work to do here in Orange County and throughout the state and we must continue to build and promote a transportation network that serves all Californians.”
Last year, Caltrans completed construction of the box culvert on Coast Highway at Main Beach in the City of Laguna Beach. Utilizing $2.9 million of SB1funds, this project replaced a 100-year-old box culvert that ran underneath State Route 1 at Main Beach, carrying storm water from the Downtown area. This project ensured not only the stability of the culvert, but the safety of drivers using Coast Highway. SB 1 provides $5 billion in transportation funding annually split between the state and local agencies. Road projects progress through construction phases more quickly based on the availability of SB 1 funds, including projects that are partially funded by SB 1. For more information about other transportation projects funded by SB 1, visit rebuildingca.ca.gov.
Project updates can be found online, on Twitter via @caltransoc , or on Facebook via @caltransoc. Caltrans wants to remind motorists to “Be Work Zone Alert” and slowdown in construction zones for the safety of themselves, other travelers, and the crews performing these improvements.