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Highway 1 Corridor Investment Program

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The Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (RTC), in cooperation with the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), is analyzing alternative investments to relieve congestion on State Route (Highway) 1 in Santa Cruz County. For purposes of environmental analysis, the project is divided into two components:

  • Tier I – A long term, program level analysis for the future of the Highway 1 corridor between Santa Cruz and Aptos. The Tier I concept for the corridor would be built over time through a series of smaller incremental projects (referred to as Tier II projects).
  • Tier II – Project level analysis of a smaller incremental project within the Tier I corridor which would move forward based on available funding. Each of the Tier II projects would have independent utility and benefit to the public and Highway 1 operations.

The first Tier II project currently under review is northbound and southbound auxiliary lanes between 41st Avenue and Soquel Drive and a pedestrian/bicycle overcrossing of Highway 1 at Chanticleer Avenue. Preliminary design and environmental analysis has begun on a second Tier II project for the construction of a pedestrian/bicycle overcrossing of Highway 1 at Mar Vista Drive in Aptos. This project will have a separate environmental document for public review and comment later in 2018.

Current Projects

  • 41st Ave–Soquel Aux/Bus-on-Shoulder Lanes & Chanticleer Bike/Ped Overcrossing

    The project will construct northbound and southbound auxiliary lanes and bus-on-shoulder improvements between the 41st Avenue and Soquel Avenue/Drive interchanges, and construct a new bicycle and pedestrian overcrossing at Chanticleer Avenue.

  • State Park–Bay/Porter Aux/Bus-on-Shoulder Lanes & Mar Vista Bike/Ped Overcrossing

    Multiple improvements including northbound and southbound auxiliary lanes between Bay Avenue/Porter Street and Park Avenue interchanges and between Park Avenue and State Park Drive interchanges.

  • Freedom Blvd–State Park Dr Aux/Bus-on-Shoulder Lanes & Coastal Rail Trail Segment 12

    The project will construct multimodal improvements to enhance transit frequency and on-time performance, and safety and mobility for vehicles, transit, bicycles, and pedestrians. The project includes northbound and southbound auxiliary lanes and bus-on-shoulder improvements between the State Park Drive and Freedom Boulevard interchanges, replace the two existing railroad bridges between the State Park Drive and Rio del Mar interchanges, and widens the Aptos Creek bridge.

  • Bus-on-Shoulder

    Bus operations along the congested portions of Highway 1 pose a significant challenge for Santa Cruz METRO as the agency works to keep public transit competitive with single-occupant vehicles in the same traffic conditions. In order to address this problem, a number of state transit agencies, in collaboration with their Department of Transportation partners, have implemented bus-on-shoulder (BOS) operations during peak congestion periods.

Completed Projects

  • Soquel–Morrissey Aux Lanes

    The Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) for Santa Cruz County was the construction manager for this project with the assistance of Parsons Brinckerhoff.  The building contract was awarded to RGW Construction on January 5, 2012. Construction on the project began on February 3, 2012, and was finished in December 2013.

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