California Department of Transportation

California Department of Transportation

Date: Friday, June 10, 2011
District: 05 – Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz Counties
Contact: Susana Z Cruz (bilingual) or Sharon Gavin (TAMC)
Phone: (805) 549-3138 or (831) 775-4415

Landmark project to improve safety and reduce traffic congestion on Highway 101 gets underway

MONTEREY COUNTY – Caltrans and the Transportation Agency for Monterey County announced today that construction has begun on the U. S. Highway 101 Prunedale Improvement Project (PIP), the largest transportation project in Monterey County since the early 1960s.

“This is an historic project that will make Highway 101 significantly safer, reduce congestion, and improve access to local businesses,” said Acting Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.

Currently, Highway 101 within the project area is a four-lane expressway with several at-grade intersections. The combination of high speed traffic on the highway and vehicles trying to enter or exit the at-grade intersections causes congestion and impacts safety.

The landmark $209 million project will upgrade a 13-mile segment (from Russell/Espinoza Road to just north of Echo Valley Road) of Highway 101 to a four-lane freeway, construct two new interchanges, a new undercrossing and a new overcrossing, modify an existing interchange, make various local road improvements, and install a concrete median barrier at various locations throughout the project limits. Collectively, these improvements will reduce congestion for 60,000 to 80,000 vehicles daily and provide safer access for motorists.

“We are very excited to begin work on a transportation project of this magnitude that will create hundreds of local jobs,” said the project’s contractors, Granite Construction Company and MCM Construction, a joint venture from Watsonville.

The project is expected to be completed in late 2014. For more information, please call the toll-free project hotline at (877) 448-6771 or visit:


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