Express Lanes Groundbreaking March 8
VTA Breaks Ground on Phase 3 Express Lanes Project
Deanna Bolio

The third phase of VTA’s Silicon Valley Express Lanes Project kicked off March 8 with a groundbreaking event in San Mateo. The event marked the start of construction on US 101 Express Lanes Projects in Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.

VTA will build express lanes on US 101 from State Route 237 in Sunnyvale to the Santa Clara County line in Palo Alto. With a seamless transition, San Mateo’s project will then extend north from the county line to I-380 in San Bruno.

“It takes creative and collaborative partnerships to provide better mobility options for those wasting time and energy while sitting in traffic,” said Jim Beall, California State Senator and author of Senate Bill 1 – a legislative package that is investing $54 billion over the next decade to fix roads, freeways and bridges in communities across California. “This is the kind of investment project the voters supported and our cities desperately needed to improve safety, reduce congestion, increase travel reliability, and air quality for Bay Area residents.”

The new express lanes will operate as a 3+ carpool lane, meaning that vehicles (excluding motorcycles) must carry a minimum of three occupants to meet carpool requirements. A toll ordinance passed by the VTA Board of Directors in December 2018 will allow vehicles with two occupants to pay a discounted toll rate. Single occupancy drivers will pay a standard rate.
More express lanes are planned to combat growing congestion on Bay Area corridors, including VTA’s Phases 4 and 5 that will bring US 101 express lanes further south in Santa Clara County. This is all part of a planned network of 550 miles of Bay Area Express Lanes by 2035.
“The hands-on leadership and sweat equity from our champions of transportation and partner agencies made this project possible, including many in the private sector who played key roles in securing the funding,” said VTA Board Chairperson Teresa O’Neill. “We won’t be able to solve our transportation challenges without the participation of our private partners so we look to this project as a model for how we can work together to deliver better transportation solutions.”

Learn more about VTA's Express Lanes Program here


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