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First Measure L pavement treatments applied
City has started slurry sealing worst streets first
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StanCOG Executive Director Rosa De Len Park hands a $1 million check from Measure L to Mayor Chris Vierra and councilmembers Mike Kline, Linda Ryno and Bret Durossette. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

The city started slurry sealing streets on the east side last week with the first monies rolling in from the recently-enacted half-cent sales tax approved in Measure L in November 2016.

A representative of Stanislaus Council of Governments (StanCOG) appeared at last week's Ceres City Council meeting to present a ceremonial check for over $1 million which represents the first allocation to the city from Measure L.

City Engineer Daryl Jordan told the council that the money was put to use that Monday morning on a number of slurry and cape seal projects to preserve existing streets. The streets include Rose Avenue, Tenth Street, Standford, Oasis, Palm and Pyramid which are receiving cape seal treatment. Cape seal includes addition of rock and slurry seal. Chahalis Way, Villa Ramon Drive, Casa Verde, El Ferrari Court, El Dorado Drive are receiving the thinner slurry seal application. Also to be treated are Roeding, Tenth Street and Don Pedro are receiving cape seals which could add another decade of life.

"We're trying to spread out the money the best we can," he told the council. "We're really excited to get this underway."

He said another round of seals will be coming this summer.

Last September the Ceres City Council approved a $511,587 contract with American Paving Systems, Inc. of Modesto, to slurry seal and/or cape seal the seven miles of streets. The work is using part of $1.2 million expected this fiscal year from the recent voter-approved Measure L, the half-cent sales tax initiative in Stanislaus County.

On Nov. 8, 2016 the voters of Stanislaus County gave their consent to Measure L for a new tax to fund street improvements. Retailers and other businesses started collecting the tax on April 1, 2016 with the receipts now rolling into the county and the nine cities' coffers. The tax revenue is a guaranteed funding source to fix roads for the next 25 years.

Revenues will be divided up among the nine cities and the county to spend on a myriad of road and transportation projects. At least half of the tax must be spent on local streets, mostly on filling pot holes and covering streets with slurry seal.

Jordan said slurry seals will be done on streets in an order that makes the most sense.

The first ones to be done "were identified as in the worst condition and the last ones to have any type of rehabilitation done on them," said Jordan. He predicted that the work will be noticeable to motorists, saying "even the color makes them feel better."

A list of specific Ceres streets to be slurry sealed over the next five years is available on the website, under the local investments tab. Each year's worth of preventative maintenance is costing about $1.2 million.

The approach that Ceres is taking is to first concentrate on maintaining the streets that are at the "breaking point before they get to that next level of improvement" said City Manager Toby Wells. A slurry seal prevents roads from breaking down to the point that more expensive reconstruction is needed.

Streets to be treated in 2019 include: Darrah Street, from Lois to Central; Denny Court, Don Pedro Road, from its west end to Blaker Road; Glenda Road, from Donna Way to Central Avenue; Keating Court, from the north end to Glasgow; Kinser Road, from Blaker Road to McKittrick Court; Lawrence Street, from Fifth to Sixth streets; Magnolia Street, from Central to Fourth; Manassas Court, from Woodview to the east end; Plumeria Court; Railroad Avenue, from Industrial Way to Collins Road; Rose Avenue, from Garrison to Whitmore, and from Darwin to Fowler; Sequoia Street, from Memorial Drive to Central Ave.; Tasha Drive, from Morgan to Cassie Lane; Thomas Street, from Second to Fourth streets; Wallace Avenue, from Douglas to Henry; Sand Bar Court from the west end to Riverbend; Armando Court; Boothe Road, from Hatch to Waynesboro Drive, and from Moonview to Whitmore; Starke Drive, from Ocaso Way to Soleado Drive; Fifth Street, from Magnolia to North streets; Seventh Street, from Lawrence to Park streets; Adrien Way, from Angie to Mitchell Road; Ambleside Way, from Kinser to Caulfield; and Canyon Drive, from Oak Ridge Drive to Moffett Road.

Measure L will raise an estimated $960 million, or $38 million per year, for the county and nine cities to spend on road maintenance, new road project construction, other transportation infrastructure and improved services for the elderly and disabled. Ceres will get to spend an estimated $30.5 million for local street and road repairs over the 25 years. It includes repairs for 135 separate roadway projects in the first five years.

Passage of the tax makes Stanislaus County a "self-help county" and allows for the receipt of more state and federal highway monies.

The 25-year countywide half-cent sales tax is expected to generate $480.2 million for local streets and roads, $48 million for bike and pedestrian paths, $96 million for traffic management, $269 million for regional projects and $67.2 million for transit services.

The Stanislaus Council of Governments (StanCOG) has outlined the following overall formula for the spending of the tax monies:

• 50 percent on street repairs;

• 28 percent on regional construction projects;

• 10 percent on traffic management, such as traffic signalization to improving local intersections to reduce vehicle wait time;

• 7 percent for point-to-point services, better transit connections between unincorporated areas and services in Modesto, transit and some money for van connections to the Altamont Corridor Express train station;

• 5 percent spent on pedestrian and bike path programs.

The tax will allocate $32 million to the Mitchell/Service/Highway 99 interchange with public facilities fees and state and federal grants making up the balance.

Revenue from the new tax will not entirely pay for the $123 million Service/Mitchell/Highway 99 interchange now being planned. The rest of the project will be paid for by public facility fees, redevelopment bond proceeds and the pursuit of federal and state grants. Wells is optimistic that the tax will enable the interchange to break ground in four years.

and be completed in 2023.

Hughson will receive $6 million over the 25-year tax life for road maintenance and fund roundabout.

It also provides $600,000 for the Safe Routes to Schools and Hatch Road multi-use trail improvements.

Modesto gets the lion's share of regional projects that would benefit all who shop and travel there. About $25 million will go toward the upgrade of the Briggsmore-Carpenter interchange; $2.6 million to widen McHenry Avenue to five lanes between Ladd and Hogue roads; $7.9 million towards construction of a new eight-lane interchange at Standiford and Highway 99 near the Vintage Faire Mall; and $74.2 million to complete the State Route 132 by constructing a four-lane expressway from Highway 99 to Gates Road. Modesto's share of local street fix money would total $171.8 million.