Caltrans director touts projects to improve I-80
By Barry Eberling | Daily Republic | August 26, 2008
Caltrans director Will Kempton prepares to leave Fairfield on a zero emission, hydrogen-powered AC Transit bus after speaking at the Green Valley park and ride Tuesday morning. Kempton was on a bus tour across the state with press and other public officials promoting highway improvements made by his agency. Photo by Brad Zweerink
FAIRFIELD - State Department of Transportation Director Will Kempton used a grapefuit-sized concrete rock to illustrate the terrible shape of Interstate 80 and the improvements that are now under way.
That rock came from nearby deteriorating freeway pavement. It popped loose in recent days under the weight of a passing truck and went flying. It missed cars but nearly struck a Caltrans worker, who was taking photos of the Fairfield carpool lane construction project.
'This is what we're dealing with on our road systems in California,' Kempton said during a Tuesday press conference at the Green Valley park-and-ride lot.
Kempton emphasized the I-80 transformation. Caltrans is spending $1 billion on the freeway from San Francisco to the Nevada border over the next few years. It is spending $290 million in Solano County, including $125 million to repave stretches from Vallejo to Vacaville.
Kempton arrived at the press conference in a hydrogen-powered bus that also carried the media. He spent the morning traveling the 170 miles of I-80 in California, stopping at various locations to highlight construction projects.
Local leaders such as Fairfield Mayor Harry Price, Vallejo Mayor Osby Davis, Solano Transportation Authority Executive Director Daryl Halls and Assemblywoman Lois Wolk joined him for the Solano County stops.
Price was upbeat to have such projects as the 8.7-mile-long carpool lane coming to Fairfield.
'Thank you very much, Director Will Kempton and all the folks at Caltrans, for making this a reality today,' Price said.
Davis found it encouraging that Caltrans is investing money to repave I-80 during tough economic times. Vallejo will develop its economic future around the freeway, he said...
See the complete story at the Daily Republic online.
Interstate 80 projects in Solano County
-- Repave from Tennessee Street to American Canyon Road in Vallejo. Cost: $35 million Construction: under way, finish summer 2009.
-- Repave from American Canyon Road to Green Valley Creek in Fairfield. Cost: $38 million. Construction: summer 2009 to fall 2010.
-- Renovate Hunter Hill rest stop in Vallejo. Cost: $8.2 million. Construction: January 2009 to winter 2012.
-- Build carpool lanes from Red Top Road to Air Base Parkway in Fairfield. Cost: $53 million. Construction: under way, finish fall 2009.
-- Relocate eastbound truck scales in Fairfield. Cost: $64 million. Construction: fall 2012 to fall 2014.
-- Repave from Highway 12 near Anheuser-Busch to east of Air Base Parkway in Fairfield. Cost: $26 million. Construction: spring 2009 to fall 2009.
-- Repave from Air Base Parkway in Fairfield to Leisure Town Road in Vacaville. Cost: $43 million. Construction: under way, finish fall 2009.
-- Renovate North Texas Street interchange in Fairfield. Cost: $16 million. Construction: Start this year, finish 2010.
-- Add traffic signals and turn lanes to Lagoon Valley overpass in Vacaville. Cost: $3 million. Construction: summer 2009 to spring 2010.
-- Lengthen the Alamo Drive on-ramp in Vacaville. Cost: $4.4 million. Construction: fall 2011 to fall 2012.