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Caltrans grants $1.7M to San Diego County climate resilience transit projects

The CalTrans logo appears on the back of a person's safety vest. Oceanside, Calif. April 5, 2023.
The CalTrans logo appears on the back of a person's safety vest. Oceanside, Calif. April 5, 2023.

The California Department of Transportation is awarding more than $1.7 million in planning grants to San Diego County projects, part of more than $51.4 million being awarded statewide to make the state's transportation system more resilient to climate change.

According to Caltrans, the selected projects will "help reduce planet- warming pollution, improve resiliency of the state highway system, enhance access to safe walkways and bike paths and expand natural disaster preparedness."

The local projects include:

  • $600,000 for the development of a multimodal mobility plan for San Diego's Mid-City area to identify safety improvements for bicyclists and pedestrians, improve first-mile/last-mile connectivity to transit and increase connections to neighboring communities;
  • $400,000 for Vista's Sustainable Mobility Plan to speed up the adoption of complete streets, prioritizing projects that improve safety, accessibility and convenience for pedestrians, cyclists and public transit users;
  • $367,591 for the North County Transit District to develop a Gender Action Plan intended to "mitigate the mobility burden" on women and gender- nonconforming groups; and
  • $344,521 for the NCTD to study a plan to enhance the travel time efficiency of its BREEZE bus service using advanced transit signal priority technology.

"California is at the forefront of planning transportation projects built to help underserved communities withstand the effects of climate change," Caltrans Director Tony Tavares said. "By working closely with local partners, we can maintain a sustainable, adaptable and resilient transportation system that will serve all Californians far into the future."

Of the total awarded around the state, $48.3 million — or 94% — will benefit disadvantaged communities, officials said.

Nearly $29 million of the funding comes from one-time state and federal sources made possible by Gov. Gavin Newsom's $15 billion clean transportation package in the 2022-23 state budget, according to a Caltrans statement.

Another $12.4 million comes from Senate Bill 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017.