More progress on fixing First Street

First Street bumps

The much-maligned pavement on the roads of Highway 152 that pass through Gilroy will get a much-anticipated makeover in 2019 after the California Transportation Commission approved over $14.1 million in repaving funds. First, however, the nearly 100 year water lines running underneath 1st Street will need to be replaced, which will cost the city approximately $4 million after the bidding process has been completed.
“We’re working in a partnership with Caltrans to replace the water lines so we don’t need to tear up our roads multiple times,” City Administrator Gabriel Gonzalez said. “Our construction timeline is about 12 to 14 months. In the meanwhile Caltrans will be preparing an environmental work for the repavement of Highway 152 which is estimated to take up to 12 to 13 months which will coincide for the construction timeline for our waterline.”
The city expects to start repair on the 1st Street waterlines to start in 2018 and when finished, Caltrans will begin repavement work thereafter. The bidding process for the water line project is expected to begin at the end of 2017 or the beginning of 2018. Caltrans is expected to begin the bidding process for the repaving in late 2018 or early 2019.
“We are very happy to have secured funding for this vital project that will improve the quality of life for so many Gilroy residents,” said Mayor Roland Velasco in a press release.
Approved on June 29, the funds will rehabilitate the pavement on the stretch of Highway 152 that runs through Gilroy from Highway 101 to less than half a mile from Santa Teresa Boulevard.
“On sections of Highway 152, including First Street (between Santa Teresa Boulevard and Monterey Street), Monterey Street itself, (between First Street and Leavesley Road) and Leavesley Road (between Monterey Street and Highway 101), the pavement has completely disintegrated and is having an economic impact on businesses along First Street,” said a press release issued by the City of Gilroy. “In some places, motorists have to drive on bare gravel and risk damage to their vehicles.”
Velasco and Gonzalez traveled to Caltrans District Headquarters in Oakland and lobbied state legislators and Caltrans officials to obtain the funds.
“Six months ago this wasn’t even on Caltrans radar to repave 1st Street,” Gonzalez said. “It was a lot of effort on the city, the city council and myself, making sure that we advocated strongly because this is a quality of life issue for our residents.”
“We want to thank State Senator Bill Monning and State Assembly Member Anna Caballero for their active support and advocacy for these much-needed road improvements,” Velasco said.
The Gilroy City Council passed $1 million in emergency funds in May to make repairs in the areas they deemed to be in the most need.