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  • Writer's pictureWTS Sacramento

Recap - October 2019 Lunch Program

On Tuesday, October 1st WTS Sacramento welcomed Amarjeet Benipal, the Caltrans District 3 Director, who gave an update on Caltrans and regional projects and innovations in District 3.

Caltrans is composed of 12 districts and provides guidance and financial assistance for highways, rail, air quality and specifications. Recent projects include the Raise 80 Project where Caltrans lifted seven and lowered two overcrossings to comply with new federal bridge vertical clearance standards in Placer County, and worked on more than 20 water quality projects surrounding the Tahoe basin. Recently constructed “congested highways” projects included the I-80 Across the Top ($136 million) project and the I-5 bus/carpool lanes ($370 million) project.

One of the District’s main objectives is providing mobility options and working on a network of managed lanes. The first joint project focusing on multimodal opportunities is Sacramento Regional Transit’s light rail Gold Line upgrades and 3rd track extension to the Folsom transit stations project ($100 million). This project is in correlation to the US-50 bus/carpool lanes Phase II project which will construct HOV lanes from I-5 to Watt Ave ($450 million). The amount of congestion getting to and from the airport is an issue the District is looking into, and the I-5 managed lanes from US-50 to the airport is a future project which the District will work towards after Regional Transit’s green line leads the way. Other projects on the radar include the SR-51/Capitol City Improvement project which will relieve congestion, improve operations and construct a Class IV Bikeway over the American River ($700 million). The Yolo-80 Multimodal Corridor Improvement Project will incorporate managed lanes in each direction on SR-113 with integrated corridor management with I-80 and US-50 ($450-700 million). The I-5/80 Interchange Upgrade project is also in the works and looking at a HOV flyover from I-5 to I-80, mixed use bridge from I-80 to I-5 and adding HOV lanes to both interstates.

District 3 is also working towards using new technology and innovations such as drones, LiDAR, Automated Machine Guidance, Self-driving Attenuator Vehicles, and Integrated Corridor Management for Consumer which will notify and connect motorists.

Director Benipal’s word of advice to the audience was to “leverage your partnerships, your relationships, your trust.” Most projects need multiple sources of support and everyone should keep in mind that it’s the outcome that’s most critical.

If you’re looking for a new job or just starting out in the industry, Caltrans is hiring all over California with a wide variety of positions available to apply.

Thank you Director Benipal for this informative District 3 update!

Lauren Reinking with Amarjeet Benipal

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