Long-awaited Highway 101 improvements completed
City hosts ribbon cutting for new Highway 46 and 101 interchange
The City of Paso Robles and the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments (SLOCOG) held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the new Highway 46 and 101 southbound interchange on Monday morning.
The $10.4-million construction project included installing an extra left turn lane from westbound Highway 46 East to Highway 101 south. That portion of Highway 46 often would back up with traffic congestion to Golden Hill Road on Friday afternoons as an influx of Central Valley tourists headed for coastal beaches.
There is also a new southbound entry and exit ramp at 17th and Riverside streets, and improvements on the 13th street bridge. The improvements were completed about a week ago and just in time for the Mid-State Fair traffic.
Project started in 2006 as envisioned by the city, SLOCOG and Caltrans to improve congestion as people from Fresno coming to SLO County from Hwy 46 to Southbound Hwy 101, according to city Capital Projects Engineer Ditas Esperanza.
SLOCOG asked city to be the lead agency for the project, she said. The city agreed provided that project elements be added to improve the city’s circulation. These elements were:
- Improve congestion at 13th Street Bridge by installing a new southbound Hwy 101 on-ramp at 17th Street and Riverside.
- Improve curb returns at Riverside and 13th Street Bridge by widening to allow truck traffic turning movement.
- Provide bike lanes at 13th Street Bridge between Riverside and Paso Robles Street
- SLOCOG/Caltrans agreed to City’s request and provided funding for the project in the amount of $10.4 million.
- Construction was awarded to Papich Construction Company