Central Valley's busiest highway finally getting some much need repairs

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Highway 99 will be repaved this summer thanks to funding from "The Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017" or SB1. (KFSN)

Highway 99 will be repaved this summer thanks to funding from The Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017 or SB-1.

Nearly $5 Million will be provided to Caltrans to repave Highway 99 from Ventura Street in Downtown Fresno to Avenue 7 in Madera County. (See below for a map)

"Well over 100,000 vehicles drive this section of highway on a daily basis. Over 13,000 of these vehicles every day are trucks caring freight up and down the Central Valley," said Ryan Chamberlain, Caltrans Chief Deputy Director.

Highway 99 has been taking a beating with all traffic on a daily basis creating potholes.

A lack of funding has made it tough for Caltrans to make major repairs, they have only been able to offer a temporary fix by just patching up the potholes. "Putting a Band-Aid on it allows us to keep the highway open," said Sam Yniguez of Caltrans District 6. "However with SB-1 funding, we will now be able to do those long-term repairs that these roads really do need."

Yniguez said pavement would be ground out and replaced, it is a long-term fix that will require very little maintenance in the future.

SB-1 was approved by state lawmakers last year. The money comes from a combination of increased taxes on gas, diesel, and vehicle registration fees.

That increase in taxes created a campaign to put repeal SB 1 on the November ballot. If successful it could jeopardize some construction projects and jobs.

"Obviously for all of us, we want to find a way to protect it for the sake of job creation, and just the need. It is just the need that we have to have SB 1 funding to keep and maintain our infrastructure," said Jose Mejia, California State Council of Laborers.

Caltrans District 6 says they have the money for all of the Highway 99 repaving projects.

Construction begins in June and is expected to be complete by the end of the summer. Most of the work will take place at night with one lane open in each direction during construction.

MAP: Highway 99 construction area
Related Topics:
trafficroad repairhighway 99caltransconstructionFresnoFresno CountyMadera County
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