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April 11, 2008 4:30 PM, EDT

California Bonds Will Help Boost Freight Movement

Port of Oakland — Kimberly White/Bloomberg News

A $3 billion slate of highway, rail and seaport improvements approved for funding by the California Transportation Commission includes $825 million for 14 projects in Northern California, the San Francisco-area Metropolitan Transportation Commission said.

The approved projects include improvements at the Port of Oakland, relocation of the Interstate 80 Cordelia truck scales and the addition of an eastbound truck-climbing lane on I-580 over the Altamont Pass.

The addition of a truck-climbing lane to eastbound I-580 over the Altamont Pass is expected to provide significant congestion relief at a serious regional bottleneck, the commission said.

“The Altamont Pass is a major chokepoint for both passenger vehicles and freight as trucks struggle to climb the grade,” said MTC Vice Chairman Scott Haggerty. “A truck-climbing lane is desperately needed to help alleviate the congestion in this corridor.”

The entire 79-project investment program will be funded through the statewide Trade Corridor Improvement Fund, which is aimed at improving California’s goods-movement infrastructure, the commission said.

The TCIF is one of several separate funding programs created by voter approval of $20 billion in transportation bonds in November 2006.

A complete list of TCIF projects is available on the CTC Web site at: www.catc.ca.gov.