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Highway 99 to get facelift

POSTED January 27, 2012 8:56 p.m.

The bumps and potholes which riddle Highway 99 throughout Stanislaus County will soon become a thing of the past.

A new, $90.2 million project will resurface and restore all of State Route 99 within Stanislaus County, stretching from the San Joaquin County line to the Merced County line.

The California Transportation Commission allocated the $12.9 million IN remaining needed funding for the project on Wednesday, clearing the way for the restoration to proceed. The allocation was part of $347 million allocated to 47 projects statewide, including a $66.2 million project to widen State Route 99 from four to six lanes in Manteca and San Joaquin County.

“We're putting people back to work building better roads, bridges, rail, and transit for California,” said Acting Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.

The Highway 99 restoration project was conceptualized only a few years ago, as other major highway projects began coming in under-cost as the economy declined and construction firms fought to provide the lowest bids. The entire Stanislaus County highway restoration project will be funded through dollars saved on other construction projects, Caltrans said.

Though Highway 99 has seen patches and repairs in the past, the coming work is believed to be the first time the entire stretch within Stanislaus County will be replaced at once.

To improve State Route 99, some base, pavement, and concrete slabs will be removed and replaced with new concrete pavement. In other areas, the existing pavement will be overlaid with new asphalt concrete.

The project also calls for installing shoulder rumble strips on inside and outside medians, fog sealing, re-striping the roadway, and replacing pavement markers.

According to Caltrans Public Information Officer Chantel Miller, construction is projected to begin in May, and complete by the end of 2013.

More specific details on the construction and highway closures will be available in the next month, once a construction bid is approved. No full closures of the highway are currently planned, Miller said.

To contact Alex Cantatore, e-mail acantatore@turockjournal.com or call 634-9141 ext. 2005.

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