On Thursday, the Bay Area received a total of $407 million from the California Transportation Commission, or CTC, to fund 11 projects.
Some of the projects that will be funded with $123 million from the CTC include the construction of express lanes to improve mobility along Interstate 80 through the heart of Solano County, according to a Metropolitan Transportation Commission, or MTC, press release. Another $25 million will be allocated to complete the Interstate 680 Southbound Express Lanes project in Alameda County, the press release adds.
“The funding is critical for Caltrans to move forward with,” said Caltrans spokesperson Vince Jacala in an email. “The projects will not only improve transportation in the Bay Area but provide funding for much needed jobs for local contractors and businesses in the Bay Area. The funding from the state will help Caltrans move forward with critical transportation projects which include many Bike Ped paths and mass transportation connections in the Bay Area.”
Bay Area transportation agencies competed with other regions in California, including Los Angeles and Fresno, for a portion of the $2 billion, according to MTC spokesperson John Goodwin. The application process consisted of sending project proposals to CTC staff, who evaluated the proposals before sending them to the commission to finalize the allocation of the funding.
Even though the CTC funding is provided for the Bay Area, Goodwin added that it would primarily impact BART and individual county transportation agencies rather than MTC itself.
“Our role, candidly, is very limited in these projects other than they have all been identified by MTC as region priorities,” Goodwin said. “But the actual delivery of the project would be up to the actual sponsors.”
According to the press release, BART received $60 million to start construction on its Train Control Modernization Project. The project is part of the Transbay Corridor Core Capacity Program, which aims to increase the number of trains able to travel through the Transbay Tube between San Francisco and Oakland.
Goodwin said construction work will start in 2021, and the competitive funding would help put local and regional prioritized projects into action. Jacala added in the email that some of the funded projects could bid in the spring and begin construction as early as summer or fall 2021.
“The funding provided here will allow Caltrans to keep working on projects that keep California’s transportation infrastructure operating and in step with multi-modal needs now and in the future,” Jacala said in the email. “These are necessary improvements with many projects focusing on bike, pedestrian and mass transit connections to the overall transportation system.”