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Funding

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$132.4 Million Awarded to Santa Barbara U.S. 101 Multimodal Corridor Project

July 3, 2023

The Santa Barbara U.S. 101 Multimodal Corridor becomes the second highest funded project in California to receive competitive Senate Bill 1 program funding, a significant boost to a more than 17-year effort to improve safety and reduce congestion. The award funds active transportation, transit, zero emission vehicles and the completion of the Highway 101 carpool lanes in Montecito and a portion of the Santa Barbara segment to the Hermosillo off-ramp.

Santa Barbara, Calif. – The California Transportation Commission approved a $132.4 million award for the Santa Barbara U.S. 101 Multimodal Corridor Project on Wednesday in Suisun City, Solano County. The approval came as part of a $2 billion investment announced by the state from the 2021 federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and competitive Senate Bill 1 (SB1) grant programs.  

The commission awarded Santa Barbara County Association of Governments (SBCAG) and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) $132.4 million to complete construction of Highway 101 improvements and carpool lanes in Montecito and the City of Santa Barbara to the Hermosillo Road off-ramp, while also providing planned electric buses for Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District, coastal access improvements, zero emission vehicle charging and contactless card readers for the Coastal Express operated by the Ventura County Transportation Commission.

The Highway 101 Carpinteria to Santa Barbara project has a total cost of $945 million and includes substantial multimodal and highway improvements. The Road Repair and Accountability Act, widely recognized as SB1, has been a game-changer for transportation in Santa Barbara County investing $316 million into the U.S. 101 corridor. Measure A, the local transportation sales tax, is leveraging $150 million, along with a multitude of local, state, and federal funding sources to make the SB1 investments possible.

“The extraordinary $132.4 million award is not only a testament to the Highway 101 project’s caliber but is a recognition of the tremendous impact that U.S. 101 has between Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties in our region – a gateway to Southern and Northern California,” said Lompoc Mayor Jenelle Osborne, chair of SBCAG Board of Directors. “The ultimate victory is for Santa Barbara County voters who selected the U.S. 101 project as a top priority with the passage of Measure A transportation sales tax that played a pivotal role in securing these funds and propelling the project forward.”

SBCAG in collaboration with Caltrans and support of City of Santa Barbara, County of Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transportation District and several elected, education, non-profit, labor, economic, rail, social justice and tribal government partners throughout Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties worked for nearly two years on the development and submittal of applications to the Senate Bill 1 funding programs.

“This allocation by the California Transportation Commission is an important step in allowing us to continue our work in this inter-regional corridor. These infrastructure improvements could not be possible without SB1 which has made a positive impact in infrastructure projects in Santa Barbara County and around the state,” said Caltrans District 5 Director Scott Eades.

The $132.4 million SB1 funding award provides funding for six components of the Highway 101 Carpinteria to Santa Barbara project:

  • Highway 101 Improvements: Completes funding for full construction and a peak hour carpool lane in both directions from Sheffield Drive north to Hermosillo off-ramp for the Montecito segment and start of the Santa Barbara segment. Improvements also include safety features to improve sight distance and add noise-reducing continuously reinforced concrete pavement.
  • Sheffield Drive to Ortega Hill Pedestrian and Bicycle Connector: Creates a connection for pedestrians and cyclists on the California Coastal Trail and Pacific Bike Route in Summerland/Montecito to improve accessibility and safety.
  • Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District (SBMTD) Electric Buses: Purchase of six electric buses and six associated chargers for SBMTD line 20 that provide service within the corridor from Downtown Santa Barbara to Carpinteria.
  • Contactless Card Readers for Ventura County Transportation Commission (VCTC) Coastal Express: Installation of 41 contactless credit and debit card readers on Coastal Express buses to allow for easy fare payment within the corridor.
  • Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Charging Infrastructure: Installation of sixteen ZEV charging stations for light-duty vehicles in five locations in the corridor including disadvantaged communities in the City of Santa Barbara and County unincorporated areas. 

“SB 1 continues to deliver funding to the highest priority transportation projects within our district and all across California, said Senator Monique Limón, 19th District. “I am excited to see Highway 101 take these crucial steps towards being completed and becoming a model for zero-emission transportation on the Central Coast and throughout the state.”

“I’ve been advocating for the 101 project as a member of the Santa Barbara City Council, the County Board of Supervisors, as an SBCAG staffer, and now, as a State Legislator,” said Assemblymember Gregg Hart, 37th District. “I am thrilled we are so close to the financial finish line. The California Transportation Commission and Caltrans have been great partners with SBCAG to build the 101 multi-modal improvements we promised the voters when they approved Measure A. This $132.4 million funding allocation is a major milestone toward the completion of the project. I will continue to work aggressively in Sacramento to help secure the needed future funding to finish the job.”

$145 million is needed to fully fund the remaining construction the ends at Sycamore Creek in the City of Santa Barbara. The State of California, SBCAG and Caltrans District 5 are working in partnership to pursue and secure additional funding and the coastal development permit to complete the final portions of the Highway 101: Carpinteria to Santa Barbara Project, including seeking federal competitive grant opportunities.

The public is encouraged to learn more about the Highway 101 Carpinteria to Santa Barbara project and sign up for construction updates online at www.sbroads.com or by telephone at (805) 845-5112.

SB 1 provides $5 billion in transportation funding annually split between the state and local agencies. Road projects progress through construction phases more quickly based on the availability of SB 1 funds, including projects that are partially funded by SB 1. The public can learn more about different state and federal infrastructure programs, track the amount of funding California is receiving, and find projects funded by SB 1 on an updated interactive map online at  RebuildingCA.ca.gov.

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