Vasco Road Improvements Under Way - NBC Bay Area

Vasco Road Improvements Under Way



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    Trees lining the Capital Beltway in Virginia are disappearing as construction begins on HOT lanes.

     Construction crews broke ground Monday on the first phase of the  Vasco Road Safety Improvement Project in eastern Contra Costa County.

          The first phase of the project will include widening and  installing a median barrier on a 1-mile stretch of the road in the  southernmost section in Contra Costa County, a section considered one of the  most treacherous.
    Crews will also be extending a passing lane, building drainage  culverts, constructing retaining walls and widening a bridge.
    The second phase of the project will extend the safety  improvements for 1.5 more miles, making the total scope of the project about  2.5 miles, Supervisor Mary Piepho said.
    Funding for the first phase, which is expected to cost about $8.5  million, is coming from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Piepho  said. Funding for the second phase will also come from stimulus funds, as  well as a federal earmark, local Measure J and statewide Proposition 1B,  Piepho said.
    The road, which is a major commute corridor between Brentwood and  Oakley in Contra Costa County and Dublin, Pleasanton and Livermore in Alameda  County, has been the site of numerous fatal accidents over the past decade.
    Between 1996 and 2008, 16 people were killed in crashes on Contra  Costa County's portion of the road, Piepho said.
    Fatal accidents decreased dramatically in the past two years when  the California Highway Patrol instated a double-fine zone and increased  enforcement, but at least one person has been killed on the road since the  safety measures were put in place.
    Improvements to the portion of the road that is in Alameda County  have already been completed.