Public workshop designed to establish priorities

October 04, 2001|By LAURA MITCHELL, Staff Writer

The public has one more chance today to give input on proposed transportation projects during a public workshop on the 2002 Imperial County Transportation Plan.

The 2002 plan is an update to the 1997 transportation plan and provides a 20-year projection of county changes in population, state highway use and land use, California Department of Transportation Chief Mark Baza said.

"We're working toward coming up with a list of priorities from the workshops," Baza said.

The plan lists 18 improvement projects, some previously identified in the 1997 plan but never completed. Most of the short-term, five-year projects from the 1997 plan were completed or are funded, Baza said.

Some of the transportation improvement projects introduced at the workshops are:

· widening Highway 115 to a four-lane expressway.

· widening Highway 98.

· improving Highway 111 to a four-lane freeway with interchanges at several locations.

· a new north-south corridor west of Forrester Road.


· a new north-south corridor west of Highway 111, based on the Calexico/Mexicali border transportation study.

· a new east-west corridor north of Aten Road.

The workshops are a joint effort of Caltrans, the Imperial Valley Association of Governments and the Southern California Association of Governments.

A workshop Tuesday in Brawley was not well attended, Baza said. A workshop in Calexico on Wednesday had a few more attendees. Baza estimated fewer than a dozen people attended the workshop in Calexico.

He said the public has generally been supportive of the projects.

A final workshop is scheduled for 4-7 tonight at the Kari Hill Center, 2995 S. 4th St. in El Centro. For more information, contact Kathi Williams of the Imperial County Public Works Department at 482-4462.

Baza said a summary of the workshops will be ready in a few weeks and will be delivered to Tim Jones, county public works director.

Staff Writer Laura Mitchell can be reached at 337-3452 or

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