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Two Years of IIJA Investments Fuel Growth Across California, Hawaii, and Western Nevada

US 395 North Valleys Project (Photo courtesy of Nevada Department of Transportation)
US 395 North Valleys Project (Photo courtesy of Nevada Department of Transportation)
US 395 North Valleys Project (Photo courtesy of Nevada Department of Transportation)
US 395 North Valleys Project (Photo courtesy of Nevada Department of Transportation)
Otay Mesa East Port of Entry Project
Otay Mesa East Port of Entry Project
The Numana Dam fish passage project in Nevada will open 65 miles of habitat along the Truckee River for the endangered Cui-ui sucker, and for the recently established migration of the threatened Lahontan cutthroat trout from Pyramid Lake. Access to this habitat is essential for the recovery of the species in the wild. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Hurner/USFWS)
The Numana Dam fish passage project in Nevada will open 65 miles of habitat along the Truckee River for the endangered Cui-ui sucker, and for the recently established migration of the threatened Lahontan cutthroat trout from Pyramid Lake. Access to this habitat is essential for the recovery of the species in the wild. (Photo courtesy of Nathan Hurner/USFWS)
Representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, members of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe, and other partners pose for the Numana Dam groundbreaking. (Photo courtesy of John Heil/USFWS)
Representatives from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, members of the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe, and other partners pose for the Numana Dam groundbreaking. (Photo courtesy of John Heil/USFWS)
In November 2021, Congress passed the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act), a once-in-a-generation investment in the nation’s infrastructure. President Joe Biden’s administration proposed this legislation to rebuild America’s roads, bridges, and rails, expand access to clean drinking water, ensure every American has access to high-speed internet, tackle the climate crisis, advance environmental justice, and invest in communities that have too often been left behind.

Over two years have passed since Congress passed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), and hundreds of substantial infrastructure improvement projects are already in full swing across the country. Highlighted below are a few of the top-funded projects underway in California, Hawaii, and western Nevada.

California
The Biden Administration invested $34.7 billion in public infrastructure and clean energy in California, including:

  • $24.3 billion for transportation investments, including roads, bridges, public transit, ports, airports, electric vehicle charging stations, and electric buses.
  • $3.7 billion in grants, rebates, and other incentives to boost the use of clean energy, buildings, and manufacturing. These funds are in addition to incentives created by the Inflation Reduction Act.
  • $1.7 billion for climate resiliency and hardening against other threats.
  • $2.4 billion for improving access to clean water and water infrastructure, including $278.8 million for replacing lead pipes and service lines.
Top Projects
Golden Gate Bridge Seismic Retrofit
IIJA Funding: $400 million
Construction Start Date: 2024
End Date: 2029

The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco will receive the final phase of a seismic retrofit, starting later this year. The first three phases were completed between 2002 and 2014. The suspension bridge carries about 40 million vehicles annually to and from San Francisco and communities to the north of the city.

The work on this upcoming $879 million phase will focus on the 6,450-foot-long main suspension span, the main towers, the south tower pier, and the fender. The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District expects the rest of the funds to come from state grants and district capital reserves. Crews will strengthen the foundations, install micropiles and rock bolts, build reinforced concrete shearwalls, and replace the housing roof and roadway deck with a precast concrete slab-on-steel stringer deck system. The additional hardening should make the structure more resilient to an earthquake or other disaster.

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“The Golden Gate Bridge is an international icon and key transportation link for the Bay Area that serves tens of millions of residents and visitors every year,” said Denis Mulligan, District General Manager. “This vital funding allows us to finish strengthening the bridge against disasters. Thanks to [former] Speaker [Nancy] Pelosi, the Biden administration, and the entire Bay Area congressional delegation, the Golden Gate Bridge will be protected for generations to come.”

Dunsmuir GAP Project
IIJA Funding: $151.4 million
Construction Start Date: 2023
End Date: 2025

Work on the Dunsmuir GAP Project on Interstate 5 near Dunsmuir, from the Sacramento River Bridge to the Black Butte Overhead, will rehabilitate the pavement and restore the road to a state of good repair. The pavement has significant chain wear. Crews will replace existing concrete and asphalt pavement with concrete, construct rumble strips, replace signs, rehabilitate culverts, and upgrade guardrail, bridge railing, and traffic management solutions elements. This California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) project will provide an improved roadway for motorists and will require less maintenance over time.

A second contract in the same vicinity will replace the southbound bridge deck and railings on the Sacramento River Bridge on Interstate 5 in the City of Dunsmuir. The California Regional Water Quality Control Board has found elevated levels of chlorides on the deck, which suggests active corrosion. Caltrans plans to manage the replacement.

Otay Mesa East Port of Entry Project
IIJA Funding: $150 million
Construction Start Date: 2022
End Date: 2024

A joint venture between Caltrans and the San Diego Association of Governments, with support from state and federal partners, this $1.1 billion project will serve as a border crossing with Mexico to decrease wait times and fuel economic growth. It also aims to improve regional mobility, strengthen border security, and add resiliency. Current ports of entry are stretched to capacity, creating congestion and limiting economic growth. This will create a new and modern facility in the region.

This project aims to reduce wait times to 20 minutes, down from a current two to four hours. That will lead to fewer greenhouse gas emissions and will improve air quality. The project also aims to provide economic benefits by making freight traffic easier to cross the border. Additionally, the project will prioritize hiring local people from disadvantaged groups and establish a pre-apprenticeship program.

Diablo Canyon Power Plant
IIJA Funding: $1.1 billion
Operation Start Date: 2023
End Date: 2026

The Diablo Canyon Power Plant produces nearly half of all the country’s carbon-free electricity and 9 percent of California’s power. Pacific Gas and Electric Company operates the 2.2-gigawatt, commercial nuclear power plant and will be eligible to receive payments from the first cycle of funding from the Civil Nuclear Credit program.

The money will help the company continue to operate the Diablo Canyon plant from January 2023 to December 2026. Pacific Gas and Electric had planned on ceasing commercial operations of two units in 2024 and 2025, but this funding will keep the plant generating electricity and save 1,500 jobs. The company will receive the credits in four annual installments.

Route 14 Pavement Reconstruction
IIJA Funding: $169.3 million
Construction Start Date: 2023
End Date: 2026

Caltrans is reconstructing the pavement on Route 14 in Los Angeles County from the Technology Drive undercrossing to the Avenue A overcrossing, near Palmdale and Lancaster. Crews will pave with hot mix asphalt.

Hawaii
The Biden Administration invested $2.1 billion in public infrastructure and clean energy in Hawaii, including:

  • $1.3 billion for transportation investments, including roads, bridges, public transit, ports, airports, electric vehicle charging stations, and electric buses.
  • $202.2 million in grants, rebates, and other incentives to boost the use of clean energy, buildings, and manufacturing. These funds are in addition to incentives created by the Inflation Reduction Act.
  • $64.4 million for climate resiliency and hardening against other threats.
  • $164.7 million for improving access to clean water and water infrastructure, including $57 million for replacing lead pipes and service lines.
Top Projects
Project URGENT
IIJA Funding: $37.4 million

The Department of Commerce awarded funds to Hawaiian Telcom to construct five new terrestrial and undersea routes and more than 600 kilometers of fiber, part of the Middle Mile Broadband Infrastructure Program. The project aims to improve quality and affordability of high-speed internet. The project will help in connecting unserved regions.

Waiale Road Extension Project
IIJA Funding: $25 million
Construction Start Date: 2024
End Date: 2025 or 2026

The Waiale Road extension will add 8,600 linear feet from East Waiko Road southwest to Honoapiilani Highway in Maui County. The county anticipates the extension will reduce congestion and provide a new route between Kahului and Wailuku. The road will link residential areas with commercial properties. The new section will include two travel lanes, bike lanes, sidewalks, and a shared-use path. The project also will facilitate public WiFi access, and broadband technology will power smart signals. Estimated total costs are pegged at $34 million.

Ala Wai Bridge
IIJA Funding: $25 million
Construction Start Date: 2024
End Date: 2025

The City and County of Honolulu Department of Transportation Services plans to let this pedestrian and bicycle bridge spanning the Ala Wai canal using a design-build delivery method. A drainage canal for the Manoa and Palolo Valleys, the waterway also invites recreational canoeing and kayaking. The department anticipates construction on the concrete asymmetrical cable-stayed bridge to start this year.

The project will connect the Waikīkī, McCully, and Mōʻiliʻili neighborhoods with the 290-foot-long clear-span bridge. It will also provide safe and convenient access to and from the tourism and employment hub at Waikiki and the other communities. Plans for the bridge began in the 1950s. Total project cost sits at $63.3 million. The U.S. Department of Transportation reported that “the project will also reduce emissions and emphasize decarbonization by promoting a modal shift to active transportation.”

Līloa Drive Extension Phase 1
IIJA Funding: $25 million
Construction Start Date: 2025
End Date: 2027

To improve capacity, traffic circulation, and reduce traffic congestion, the Maui County Department of Public Works will extend Līloa Drive, also referred to as the North-South Collector Road, by nearly 1 mile, adding curbs, gutters, retaining walls, utility improvements, lighting, and sidewalks. The project also will add a bridge, two roundabouts at Kulanihakoi Street and Waipuilani Road, and a shared-use path for pedestrians and bicycle riders.

The U.S. Department of Transportation reported that the project will improve quality of life by increasing residents access to health care, grocery stores, recreation, and faith communities. The extension will create redundancy and alternative routes away from “climate hazard” area. It also features environmental sustainability by reducing vehicle dependence in a region where many residents do not own a vehicle.

Poipu Road Safety and Mobility
IIJA Funding: $24.8 million

The county of Kauai will improve safety and mobility on 3.3 miles of Poipu Road from Koloa Town to the resort district of the county. The project includes resurfacing the road and adding three roundabouts, bicycle lanes, sidewalks and pedestrian crossings, landscaped medians, and drainage improvements. The total cost of the project is $31 million.

The White House reported that the “project will improve safety for school children and commuters by making roadway improvements and adding pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure.”

Nevada
The Biden Administration invested $3.3 billion in public infrastructure and clean energy throughout Nevada, including:

  • $2.2 billion for transportation investments, including roads, bridges, public transit, ports, airports, electric vehicle charging stations, and electric buses.
  • $261.8 million in grants, rebates, and other incentives to boost the use of clean energy, buildings, and manufacturing. These funds are in addition to incentives created by the Inflation Reduction Act.
  • $74.2 million for climate resiliency and hardening against other threats.
  • $203.7 million for improving access to clean water and water infrastructure, including $61.5 million for replacing lead pipes and service lines.
Top Projects - Western Nevada
US 395 North Valleys, Phase 1B
IIJA Funding: $9 million
Construction Start Date: 2023
End Date: 2025

The Nevada Department of Transportation is widening four miles of U.S. 395 southbound from North McCarran Boulevard to Golden Valley Road from two lanes to three lanes. The new lane will be placed in the existing inside median. Crews will rehabilitate the existing roadway, add sound walls, construct merge lanes and a braided northbound U.S. 395 off ramp, and build auxiliary lanes between the interchanges both northbound and southbound. The project aims to enhance safety and mobility between Reno and the North Valleys. The total cost for all phases of the North Valleys project is estimated at $230 million.

Numana Dam Fish Passage Project
IIJA Funding: $8.3 million
Construction Start Date: 2023

This project will support the recovery of Cui-ui and Lahontan cutthroat trout. These fish are culturally important to the Washoe Tribe of Nevada and California. The tribe’s ancestral lands surround Lake Tahoe. The Lahontan cutthroat trout have been listed as a threatened species. Overfishing and damage to their spawning area and greater numbers of nonnative fish have led to the trout’s demise. The project will open 65 miles of habitat along the Truckee River for the fish.

The project will install a permanent roughened rock ramp at Numana Dam, an irrigation diversion structure within the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe Reservation. The dam, installed in 1917, provides water to tribal farmers and ranchers. The project also will support Pyramid Lake’s recreational fishing.

“We are proud of our longstanding partnership with the Pyramid Lake Paiute Tribe and others to support recovery efforts for Cui-ui sucker and Lahontan cutthroat trout. Together, we have made significant progress over the last 50 years,” said Paul Souza, Pacific Southwest Regional Director for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “The investment of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law funds at Numana Dam will augment our past and existing recovery efforts for these iconic and culturally important fish by opening up more than 65 miles of historic habitat for the first time in over 100 years.”

Hydrogen Fueling Facility and New Buses
IIJA Funding: $8.78 million
Construction Start Date: 2024
End Date: 2024

The Regional Transportation Commission of Washoe County will buy hydrogen fuel cell-electric buses and construct a hydrogen fueling facility to improve service reliability and air quality for residents in the Reno-Sparks metropolitan area. It represents a significant investment in the commission’s transition from diesel buses to zero-emission vehicles. The area currently experiences ozone levels higher than air-quality targets.

Compressed hydrogen gas fuel the new buses. The cells combine hydrogen and oxygen to produce the electrical power to move the buses.

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