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Turlock breaks ground on first road tax project
West Main groundbreaking
Local and area officials celebrate the groundbreaking of Turlock’s first transportation project using Measure L funds at the corner of West Main Street and Soderquist Road on Monday. PICTURED LEFT TO RIGHT: Mike Anderson, District Director for Congressman Jeff Denham; Councilmember Bill DeHart; Councilmember Gil Esquire; County Supervisor Vito Chiesa; Craig Lewis, chair, Measure L Oversight Committee; Rosa De León Park, executive director, Stanislaus Council of Governments; Mayor Gary Soiseth; N - photo by Photo Contributed

Turlock is finally seeing the fruits of the countywide road tax voters narrowly approved in 2016, as the City held a ceremonial groundbreaking on Monday to mark the beginning of the West Main Street reconstruction and rehabilitation project.

“Turlock is excited to launch our first Measure L project,” said Mayor Gary Soiseth. “Our strategy is to make our dollars stretch and benefit the most motorists as possible. West Main is one of Turlock's most used roadways in the worst condition. Its reconstruction will benefit both residents and visitors by allowing them to safely and efficiently travel from Highway 99 into our historic downtown."

The total cost of the West Main Street project is expected to be around $9.34 million — $6.089 million from Measure L funds and more than $3.25 million in City funds designated for infrastructure improvements. Teichert Construction is the contractor on this project.

The City’s first project using Measure L (countywide road tax) funds — has been a long-time coming.

The City began soliciting public input for the West Main Street project in January 2016, with the hopes that construction could start in August 2017. Conflicting opinion on how the oldest part of West Main should be realigned and a rushed bid process delayed the project. The cost of the project has also increased significantly from the original estimate of $4.2 million.

West Main groundbreaking pic 2

Due to the increase in funds needed for the West Main Corridor project, other Measure L projects were pushed back approximately two years. The other planned projects for the first year of Measure L funds that are being delayed include Golden State Boulevard and East Avenue.

The West Main Corridor project will have two phases. Phase I will include West Main Street from just past S. Walnut Road to West Avenue South. The roadway will receive an overlay, similar to what was put on Monte Vista Avenue, and all of the medians will be replaced with all but two median openings closed for better traffic control. The median openings that will remain are located in front of Evergreen Packing between Soderquist and Tully roads and the one adjacent to a truck tire shop between Clifford and Alaska.

The City will also install a wrought iron fence in the median adjacent to Osborn Two-Way Immersion Academy, similar to the one in front of Turlock Junior High School, to encourage pedestrians to use the designated crosswalks.

Phase II includes a complete reconstruction of West Main Street from West Avenue South to Lander Avenue. The project will also see a majority of the water, sewer and storm utilities on West Main removed and reinstalled due to age, size or location.

Work on the W. Main Street rehabilitation project is expected to continue through spring or summer 2019.