Utility relocation work and the removal of seven trees will occur over the next few months in preparation for the upcoming Highway 101 Operational Improvements between Milpas Street and Hot Springs Road, slated to begin construction in the summer of 2008.
Five of the seven trees to be removed are in preparation for enhancements to Sycamore Creek and Sycamore Creek Bridge that will occur during the overall construction project.
Resuming in January, various utilities will be relocated in advance of the construction of freeway and local street improvements. In the vicinity of Coast Village Road, Verizon, Southern California Edison, and Cox Communications installed new underground facilities.
The City of Santa Barbara relocated water and wastewater lines near Cacique, Indio Muerto, and Punta Gorda Streets. Edison high-voltage transmission lines remained above ground for safety and maintenance.
Prior to February 15th, Caltrans maintenance crews will remove seven trees in the project corridor to avoid the possibility of harm to nesting birds that could occur if work had to wait until the summer 2008. The trees will be removed near Sycamore Creek by Dwight Murphy Field and near the Milpas northbound off-ramp. The tree removal at Sycamore Creek will prepare for enhancements that were approved as part of the permit for the Highway 101 Operational Improvements. The improvements include planting 36 native trees, 243 shrubs, 120 wet-zone plants, and additional habitat enhancements.
Overall, the improvements between Milpas Street and Hot Springs Road include planting nearly 500 trees as well as additional landscaping throughout the project area.
Highway 101 Improvements
The project construction costs are approximately $57 million and include the reconstruction of two major interchanges, six new or improved bridges, freeway widening, and improvements to local streets and pedestrian pathways.
Construction is slated to begin in the summer of 2008 and will take four years; each construction stage is approximately one year in length.
During construction, Highway 101 will have 2 lanes open in each direction.
The majority of construction will occur behind concrete barriers during daytime work hours; some nighttime lane closures will occur.
Main project components include:
• Third southbound lane added between Milpas Street and Hot Springs Road/Cabrillo Boulevard
• Third northbound lane added between Salinas Street and Milpas Street
• Bridge replacement on Highway 101 at Milpas Street
• Replacement and widening of Sycamore Creek Bridge on Highway 101
• Northbound merge lane added from Cabrillo Boulevard on-ramp to the Salinas Street off-ramp
• Cacique Street pedestrian, vehicle, and bike connection added between Milpas Street and Alisos Street (under Highway 101)
• Roundabout added at Cabrillo Boulevard/Hot Springs Road/Coast Village Road/Old Coast Highway for local circulation improvements
• Improved pedestrian/bicycle access under Highway 101 and along Old Coast Highway
Public outreach has been ongoing for the last two years to provide residents and businesses with project planning information in advance of construction.
The Highway 101 Operational Improvements between Milpas Street and Hot Springs Road are funded by state gas tax and $13 million Measure D dollars, Santa Barbara County’s local transportation sales tax. Caltrans, the California Department of Transportation, is currently advertising the freeway and local street improvement project for construction bids.
This is a joint project by the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments, Caltrans, and the City of Santa Barbara.
For more information. call 888/SB-ROADS.
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