California's freeways and major thoroughfares are among the most congested in the nation. With 50 million people expected to live in California by 2055, we need to be innovative in how drivers move across the state. According to TRIP, a national transportation research group, traffic congestion costs California residents a total of $28 billion each year in the form of lost time and wasted fuel.
SB 1 created the Solutions for Congested Corridors Program (SCCP) , providing $250 million annually to multimodal corridor plans that make performance improvements along the state's busiest highways. SB 1 also provides funding for additional programs that help address congestion through their investments.
Solutions for Congested Corridors Program (SCCP): $250 Million Annually
The Solutions for Congested Corridors Program (SCCP) provides funding to achieve a balanced set of transportation, environmental, and community access improvements to reduce congestion throughout the state. These projects are multimodal corridor plans that implement specific transportation performance improvements by providing more transportation choices while preserving the character of local communities and creating opportunities for neighborhood enhancement.
Eligible project elements within the corridor plans may include improvements to state highways, local streets and roads, rail facilities, public transit facilities, bicycle and pedestrian facilities, and restoration or preservation work that protects critical local habitat or open space. This program also provides support for capacity increasing projects on the state highway system like high-occupancy vehicle lanes, managed lanes, and other non-general purpose lane improvements for safety and/or operational improvements for all modes of travel.
The goals for these projects include:
- Providing more transportation choices for residents, commuters and visitors
- Improve traffic flow while improving air quality and taking on environmental/health challenges
- Caltrans and local or regional partners working together to find wide-reaching solutions
Projects selected include:
- San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties: $233.2 million to build 22 miles of new, managed lanes in San Mateo County and convert approximately nine miles of carpool lanes to express lanes in Santa Clara County. This will reduce congestion, increase reliability, improve safety and air quality, and will allow for faster travel times and more transit options. This project is also receiving $20 million in Local Partnership Competitive funding.
- Sacramento County: $110.3 million to build seven miles of carpool lanes on US 50 from Interstate 5 to just east of Watt Avenue, and expand light rail service from Sunrise Blvd. to Downtown Folsom.
Funding: Nominations by local agencies and the state.
Traffic Management Elements
To move people, vehicles and goods quickly, reliably and safely, traffic managers look towards technology to better manage the demand and harmonize traffic flow.
One of Caltrans' strategies to address congestion includes active traffic management, utilizing technology that helps the existing freeway system work smarter and more efficiently to promote safe and consistent traffic flow.
Caltrans uses technology to better manage urban congestion and has invested in more than 50,000 traffic devices that relay travel information to Caltrans and/or help the Department monitor traffic.
- SB 1 provides funding to ensure we can bring 90 percent of these traffic management systems to good working order by 2027.
- SB 1 dollars will pay for repairs to congestion-reducing technology such as ramp meters, traffic loops and electronic highway message signs.