Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Berg Pushes Willits Bypass

As many of you already know, our very own assemblybabe, Patty Berg, is asking residents of the north coast to contact the California Transportation Commission and urge them to fund the completion of the proposed Willits bypass.

I'm all in support of this despite having no problem driving through Willits most of the time. It's the summer when the bottleneck inside the town raises its ugly head and can make it take up to an hour, or so it seems, just to get through town. That can, indeed, be a problem.

Sure, I might agree with others who have said the Bay Area has worse congestion problems. I suspect they always will and, frankly, I can't help but wonder what they can do about the congestion they already have? You can only have so many people driving on a certain amount of land at any one time. Seems to me they're already just about out of room as it is.

Besides, seems to me it doesn't make sense to have the main course of transportation on the California coast, north to south, being held up by bottlenecks. With that in mind, I would think the Confusion Hill bypass should be the priority, not Willits. But since the funds come from slightly different sources (I think?) why not do both?

Regardless, I don't think I'll see either completed in my lifetime.

22 Comments:

At 8:32 AM, Blogger Carol said...

Fred, isn't the Confusion Hill bypass already funded?

 
At 8:45 AM, Blogger Fred said...

I think so. That's why I said I THINK the projects are funded separately. That said, the Santa Rosa and Petaluma widening projects were supposedly already funded and now they're saying they don't have enough money. I believe I posted on that issue here a while back.

Whether any of this bond money ends up filling up the funding gap for the Santa Rosa and Petaluma projects I haven't heard yet. I believe I heard some chatter in the Santa Rosa Press- Democrat about them being hopeful they'll grab some of the bond money.

 
At 9:32 AM, Blogger Anon.R.mous said...

As long as Berg really wants to stick with her guns and make 101 STAA aproved all the way up and down, this bypass isn't going to have that large of a impact on the prices of goods in this area. Should the bypass be done? Yeah, I'm sick of playing high school student dodgeball when I come into town. And it would speed things up. Santa Rosa is another problem, but they should have taken care of that a long time ago.

 
At 9:55 AM, Blogger Rose said...

Confusion HIll should be THE priority.

 
At 9:58 AM, Blogger Fred said...

That's what I would think, if only because when Confusion Hill gets closed down, just about all north and southbound along the northcoast gets shut down.

Willits is just a bottleneck that slows you down certain times of the year.

 
At 10:05 AM, Blogger Hayduke said...

The Confusion Hill project is not only funded but fully under construction.

 
At 10:35 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What is north of Willits anyways? We don't have anything up here except some old people and old woodchips. I wouldn't be surprised if the money gets put elsewhere in the state, they actually could use it. Personally, redoing highway 37 would be a good idea IMO. Creating a bypass around Willits would just confuse oldtimers like Fred who need to use the bathroom because of a "going problem" every few miles.

Ever notice Fred's obsession with reststops? Yeah, the places truckers stop to get their cocks sucked.

 
At 11:05 AM, Blogger Anon.R.mous said...

Anonymous said...

What is north of Willits anyways? We don't have anything up here except some old people and old woodchips. I wouldn't be surprised if the money gets put elsewhere in the state, they actually could use it. Personally, redoing highway 37 would be a good idea IMO. Creating a bypass around Willits would just confuse oldtimers like myself who need to use the bathroom because of a "going problem" every few miles.

Ever notice my obsession with reststops? Yeah, the places truckers stop to get their cocks sucked by me.

10:35 AM


That's nice that you offer a public service anonymous, but this isn't the place where you should post that kind of stuff. But can you hear that? That's the sound of the demons in your head. Better go check yourself into the local nut-hut!

 
At 11:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Willlits bypass was put forward by quite a few counties that banded together and that is probably why there is upset that it may not get funded. Funds are being requested by some and their projects aren't ready to build and evidently have not been "studied" yet by CalTrans. Confusion Hill bypass will take a couple of years to finish but I'm looking forward to being able to go south when it rains.

I don't know why CalTrans can't let large trucks run through the Richardson Grove area at night using a stop light like when some road repairs were being done on 299 for one way traffic. It worked.

 
At 1:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Willits bypass dead -


Congestion relief projects first to receive bond funds
Jeffrey L. Rabin, Times Staff Writer
12:45 PM PST, February 28, 2007

The California Transportation Commission today approved $4.5 billion in bond funds for highway projects after stripping rural areas of long-sought road improvements in favor of the state's highly congested urban areas.

After weeks of extraordinarily intense lobbying, the commission voted unanimously to approve the first round of spending for congestion relief projects. The infusion of funds — the largest in decades — came from a massive $19.9 billion transportation bond approved by the state's voters in November.

Before a standing-room-only crowd at Irvine's City Hall, the commission quickly voted to divert $177 million from a project in Mendocino County to Sacramento and the San Francisco Bay Area and $29 million from Imperial County to other Southern California projects. It was a raw display of the political clout of the state's highly populated urban areas.

The final package includes $1.2 billion for Los Angeles County, including construction of a carpool lane on the northbound San Diego Freeway from the Westside to the San Fernando Valley. The $730 million carpool lane devoured almost one-sixth of all the money allocated statewide.

Also included was initial funding for a carpool lane on Interstate 5 from the Orange County line to the Interstate 605 interchange in Downey.

At the urging of Los Angeles County officials, the commission agreed to add another $73 million for construction of a carpool lane on Interstate 5 in the San Fernando Valley, between state Routes 134 and 170.

After a last-minute pitch from representatives of Orange and Riverside counties, the commission also agreed to partially fund additional lanes for the 91 Freeway from state Route 55 to Gypsum Canyon Road.

 
At 4:45 PM, Blogger Fred said...

1:29 quoted, "the commission quickly voted to divert $177 million from a project in Mendocino County to Sacramento and the San Francisco Bay Area and $29 million from Imperial County to other Southern California projects.".

That's rather odd. Someone who wrote a letter to the Santa Rosa Press- Democrat a few days ago brought up the point that SoCal shouldn't be able to do anything with NorCal funds in regards this transportation bond.

The bond money, as she explained, was supposed to be split 60/40 between SoCal and NorCal- not sure which side got which percentage. I believe I read something like that elsewhere, as well.

I'm not sure where the dividing line between SoCal and NorCal is according to the transportation folks but I'm sure it isn't anywhere near Irvine.

If the story you forwarded is factual, and the what the letter writer to the SRPD is also right, seems to me there's some skullduggery going on somewhere, which wouldn't surprise me.

Just another reason to think twice about passing any kind of bond measures, especially if you live in a rural area.

 
At 4:45 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

C,mon, we never had a shot at that... Any meaningful transportation dollar the state will spend will go way south of here.

BTW, getting the STAA trucks through Richardson Grove, which will be the last bottleneck when Confusion Hill is done, is way more important to us up here than Willits Bypass. Anyone willing to take out a few trees?

 
At 5:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think maybe it is once again time to think about splitting the state in half (or thirds).

 
At 6:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Splitting the state??? What, and risk someone like Gallegos being Govenor of Northcali? YIKES!

 
At 6:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This brings to mind the recent thread about us Humboldters paying our fair share.

 
At 12:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gallegos is an idiot who after the last 8 months couldn't get re-elected as dog catcher. What I am pissed off about is the fact that Berg should have spent more time than just a passing second or two to real issues that face this area (yes - like transportation) as opposed to wasting time on assisted suicide and needle exchange then maybe we would have gotten that bypass as needed.

 
At 4:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Fred, what is with your preoccupation with rest stops? Dont you think people will find it a bit strange you always seem to strike up conversations on your road trips at these facilities?

 
At 5:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

12:04-"you say you'd change the constitution, well you know, we all want to change your head..."

 
At 7:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This one had a real chance. When the Socal interests realized that infighting wasn't going to get them anywhere, they went after the few rural recommended projects.

After all, to those chumps....$177 mil is small change.

The point is that the Director of the Trans dept was lobbied by those legislators in the Bay area and LA and he testified, against his own staff recommendation that "Willits is too expensive for a rural project" The dude knew where his budget votes came from and he would have been in deep sh*t if he didn't go along with the power play.

Probably Patty and Patricia couldn't do a thing about it. Neither of them has the political clout to stand up for the district....so it became last minute, face saving, damage control. Once again these districts get sold out for metro-political expediency.

Berg's righteous indignation is a contemporary version of crocodile tears. She knew the deal was going south....and it did.

It's the all too often manifested trade off between party support and the needs of the district.

In short...she sold us out again.

Want some extra irony? Mendocino County deferred all of its other transportation projects to make a priority of Willits. Thanks to Patty...they are screwed. They....like the whole north state...get virtually nada.

Patty has just proved her ability to (as she says) "fight" for her constituents and once again...she got in a fight she couldn't win. I can't wait to hear her condemnation of Fabian Nunez (ha)...the Speaker was the architect of this debacle. (Not going to happen) If She bucks the status quo, she loses her office and committee assignments...not that she does a damn thing with either of them. That's the tragedy for us and the why of this....she's controlled by a ward healer from East LA. He owns her....we don't.

Maybe that's he theory of the 'compassionate choices' bill....not only does it get her some headlines around the state....but it removes a lot of the long term performance memory from the district.

That might help if they ease term limits....as they surely will.

She says she'll run for another term....or get this....run for Insurance Commissioner...

The teat of political power is filled with the hunger for....more of the same.

Patty is a disappointment.

Someone....anyone...articulate one damn thing she's done for you or this district.

I'd love to know about it.

 
At 10:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A precursor of the future of the railroad.

 
At 7:38 AM, Blogger Fred said...

4:44 wrote, "Fred, what is with your preoccupation with rest stops?".

Seems to me you're the one with a preoccupation with rest stops. You keep bringing them up.

But not to worry; I'll mention them again in my next travelogue. That should give you something to get excited about.

 
At 9:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Champions senior citizen causes.

 

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