Fi­nal Stage Of Cor­ri­dor Im­prove­ments Be­gin This Month

Escalon Times - - NEWS -

It didn’t seem long ago when lo­cal of­fi­cials from across the re­gion at­tended the McHenry Av­enue Cor­ri­dor Im­prove­ment ground­break­ing cer­e­mony at the corner of East River Road and McHenry Av­enue. Less than a year later, the first stage of the project is nearly com­plete and mo­torists trav­el­ing along the cor­ri­dor will find them­selves a lit­tle closer to the sun­rise while cross­ing the beau­ti­ful Stanis­laus River.

“Thanks to the proac­tive ef­forts of a hard­work­ing San Joaquin County Pub­lic Works Project Team, it is easy to for­get that con­struc­tion ac­tiv­i­ties have been un­der­way for nearly a year. The Project Team con­tin­ues to im­ple­ment in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions to keep the pub­lic in­formed of con­struc­tion progress and traf­fic con­di­tions, and min­i­mize im­pacts to the com­mu­nity,” said San Joaquin County Su­per­vi­sor Chuck Winn.

On Thurs­day night, April 26, crews worked to im­ple­ment the lat­est por­tion of the project, to have south­bound and north­bound McHenry Av­enue traf­fic shifted onto the east­ern half of the re­place­ment bridge by Fri­day morn­ing, April 27 at 5 a.m.

The new struc­ture is al­ready two feet wider than the ex­ist­ing 30-foot wide bridge. The to­tal width of the re­place­ment bridge will be more than 75 feet and will in­clude a side­walk and 5-foot paved shoul­ders to ac­com­mo­date bi­cy­clists.

“Trans­porta­tion is crit­i­cal to the Val­ley,” said Rep. Jeff Den­ham (R-Tur­lock). “I’m proud of our lo­cal com­mu­nity for get­ting this done and will con­tinue work­ing to bring more of our trans­porta­tion dol­lars back to the Val­ley.”

In ad­di­tion, the tem­po­rary round­about, dubbed as the “bean-a-bout” for its pe­cu­liar peanut-like shape, lo­cated at the in­ter­sec­tion of East River Road and McHenry Av­enue, was read­justed tonight to ac­com­mo­date the traf­fic shift. Mo­torists can ex­pect the third edi­tion of the round­about to be more round than its pre­de­ces­sors.

The project is sched­uled for com­ple­tion by sum­mer of 2020; how­ever, 50 per­cent of the work has al­ready been com­pleted. The sec­ond bridge struc­ture, within the lim­its of San Joaquin County’s cor­ri­dor im­prove­ments, was re­placed in Fe­bru­ary 2018, a year ahead of sched­ule. The ag­ing struc­ture was in­ad­e­quate and not wide enough to ac­com­mo­date fu­ture traf­fic growth. Once traf­fic shifts onto the east­ern half of the new McHenry Av­enue Bridge over Stanis­laus River, the fi­nal stage of the work will com­mence. Up­com­ing work will in­clude the de­mo­li­tion of the ex­ist­ing bridge over the Stanis­laus River and con­struc­tion of the west­ern half of the re­place­ment bridge.

By sum­mer 2020, the McHenry Av­enue Cor­ri­dor from ap­prox­i­mately 1,500 feet south of East River Road to just south of Jones Road will boast two new mod­ern bridges, a widened road­way with a cen­ter twoway left turn lane, and a sig­nal­ized in­ter­sec­tion at McHenry Av­enue and East River Road. The cor­ri­dor is de­signed to ac­com­mo­date cur­rent and fu­ture traf­fic con­di­tions.

“The ben­e­fits of this project are tremen­dous, and though the McHenry Av­enue Bridge is one of only three Stanis­laus River cross­ings in the area and di­rectly con­nects Escalon and Modesto, the project reaches be­yond San Joaquin and Stanis­laus coun­ties. It will pro­vide a safer and more traf­fic-ef­fi­cient cor­ri­dor for decades to come,” con­cluded San Joaquin County Board of Su­per­vi­sors Chair­man Bob El­liot.

PHOTO CON­TRIB­UTED

Taken from above McHenry Av­enue, this con­struc­tion photo is of the east­ern half of the new re­place­ment bridge over the Stanis­laus River. The new struc­ture was put into ser­vice with a Fri­day morn­ing, April 27 traf­fic shift.

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