East Bay short on top stimulus projects

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, at a news conference in Merced just now, has highlighted the 57 road and highway projects costing $625 million that’ll be first in line to get infrastructure-focused federal economic stimulus funding (creating an estimated 11,000 jobs), selected last week by the California Transportation Commission.

Looking at that list, I see a grand total of one project in the East Bay: a rehab of the bridge deck where Interstate 880 overpasses Fruitvale Avenue in Oakland, costing about $12.63 million. That’s it for Alameda County, and there are no projects in Contra Costa County.

These 57 projects come under the State Highway Operations and Protection Program, put at the top of the list “because protecting public safety is the highest priority and preserving the state’s investment in its highway system is highly cost-effective,” the governor’s office says. This is only the first round; California might get about $2.57 billion in all for highways, local streets and roads, freight and passenger rail, and port infrastructure projects from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act signed into law Feb. 17 by President Barack Obama.

Let’s hope we see some more of that in the East Bay, and soon.

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • 4Antioch

    57 projects and we have 58 counties; and Contra Costa (one of the 10 largest counties) gets nothing???

    So much for “leadership” from the Contra Costa Legialtors (thanks, Mark & Tom for nothing, zip, zilch, nada!).

    I hope the Contra Costa voters remember this when the elections come around!