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North - South Connector Project
/ Greenley Road Extension Project

The North-South Connector Project, or Greenley Road Extension, in one form or another, has been included in every Tuolumne County Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) since the first RTP in 1975.

 

At a joint meeting of the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors and Sonora City Council on December 17, 2021, the Greenley Road Extension Project was discussed as a project of mutual interest. Resolution 127-21 was passed resolving to maintain open communication on issues affecting citizens with a collective mission of creating safe and healthy communities that promote economic prosperity and enhance quality of life for both citizens and visitors. On August 16, 2022 the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors approved the Public Works Department to collaborate with the Tuolumne County Transportation Council and City of Sonora on the development of a Project Initiation Document for Phase I of the North-South Connector (Greenley Road Extension) Project.

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Project Background

 

Project History

The Greenley Road Extension Project, in one form or another, has been included in every Tuolumne County Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) since the first RTP in 1975. In the mid 1970’s, the Greenley Road Extension became part of the Federal Aid Secondary Program. With both Federal and State funding the project proceeded through preliminary design, State and Federal assessment, alternate route studies, and then, in 1987, a Finding of No Significant Impact was adopted by the Federal Highway Administration (FHA)(February 1987). Following numerous hearings and protests from property owners, a route was adopted in September of 1987 and the project proceeded to final design.

 

In the years following 1987 the project has seen a number of challenges and changes. In 1989, the project was ready for property acquisition but became stalled. In 1990, the Federal Aid Secondary Program ended and funding was lost. In 1991, the Greenley Road Extension Project became the “North-South Connector Project”, without a specific route, as part of the Countywide Road Program and Traffic Mitigation Feed Program adopted by both Tuolumne County and the City of Sonora. It has remained on the list of regional improvements ever since as numerous studies have supported the project’s validity over the years. 

In 2006, the County Public Works Department completed an alignment study of the North-South Corridor. The study looked at more than 100 alternative alignments over a large geographic area.

 

Upon conclusion of the study, staff recommended that the Stage I Greenley Road Extension alignments be further considered inclusive of more public outreach and direct consultation with property owners along the route and completion of a Preliminary Environmental Document.

The 2018 Tuolumne County General Plan identified the Greenley Road Extension, and associated circulation improvements, as future collectors.

 

 

Recent Efforts and Associated Projects:

In 2020-2021, Caltrans conducted a Congested Corridor Plan for SR49. This comprehensive study included all modes of transportation for the purpose of reducing traffic congestion on SR49 in Jamestown and Sonora. The study also considered a western alignment of SR 49  and the Greenley Road Extension. The Caltrans study determined that the long-awaited Greenley Road Extension remains the most effective way to reduce traffic congestion in downtown Sonora.

 

In 2023, TCTC completed the Tuolumne County Evacuation Needs Assessment and Communication Strategies Project. This project identified SR 49 through downtown Sonora as becoming gridlocked during several fire scenarios. This reflects what we saw with the Washington Fire.

While strategies to improve flow (including multi-modal options)will have a positive impact, the area will likely need an alternative, such as the Greenley Road Extension, to benefit evacuations. Additionally, a forty-foot-wide roadway with vegetation control withing the right-of-way would provide a beneficial fire break to residents along Browns Flat in the County and Meyer Hills area of Sonora. It is further evident that additional extensions and connections of other, nearby roads, will be essential for evacuation capacity and efficiency in the Sonora area. The Greenley Road extension would provide exceptional benefit as the first phase pursued as the backbone of the later evacuation improvements in the area.

Example of Anticipated Evacuation Challenges from Evac Plan

 

Project Goals: 

1. The provision of an alternate evacuation route, as well as a firebreak, for the Downtown Sonora area and serve as the backbone for further evacuation route improvements in the area.

2. Reduced traffic congestion in the downtown area with reduced traffic on SR 49, Washington Street, Elkin Street, Stewart Street, Lyons Street, and Mono Way (Restano Way To Greenley Road)

3. Improved access to critical infrastructure

4. Increase multi-modal connectivity by creating continuous connections to the Gold Rush Shared Use Path Project that will increase mode choice and ensure equitable access to critical infrastructure

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Current Effort

At a joint meeting of the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors and Sonora City Council on December 17, 2021, the Greenley Road Extension Project was discussed as a project of mutual interest. Resolution 127-21 was passed resolving to maintain open communication on issues affecting citizens with a collective mission of creating safe and healthy communities that promote economic prosperity and enhance quality of life for both citizens and visitors. On August 16, 2022 the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors approved the Public Works Department to collaborate with the Tuolumne County Transportation Council and City of Sonora on the development of a Project Initiation Document for Phase I of the North-South Connector (Greenley Road Extension) Project.

TCTC Seeks Public Input on Greenley Road Project Request for Qualifications and Included Scope of Work

 

A Request for Qualifications is a preliminary document written, and published, to recruit a consultant to work on a project. In this case, that project is the Greenley Road Extension (Otherwise known as the "North-South Connector").

On March 15, 2023 the initial Project Development Team (PDT) meeting was held which included representatives from the City of Sonora, Tuolumne County, Caltrans, and the Tuolumne County Transportation Council. The discussion at that meeting centered around the content of the Draft Request for Qualifications (RFQ) and the goals for the project. TCTC incorporated feedback from PDT members into an updated Draft RFQ which was provided to Board members at the public meeting on December 13, 2023.

 

Staff recognize that, due to the scale and complexity associated with it, the project requires careful consideration of the impact it will have upon the Region when complete. As a result, Staff only provided the RFQ this month in order to allow Board members, and the public, ample time for review and consideration of the content and its possible impact on the community.  Staff will put the item on the February 14, 2024 TCTC meeting agenda for discussion, revisions, and possible approval. 

 

 

How You Can Provide Your Input

 

Please review the draft RFQ here: 

 

If you have any input to provide you may submit it via a digital form: [ here ]

 

Or, you can submit your feedback via email to:

Darin Grossi,

TCTC/TCTA Executive Director

DGROSSI@co.tuolumne.ca.us  

Project Milestones and Documents

 

RFQ Released: Not yet released, in development

 

RFQ Closed: N/A

Consultant Chosen By Panel: N/A

Draft Final Plan: N/A

Final Plan, Approved: N/A

Greenley Road / North-South Connector

Board of Supervisors Item on 8 / 16 / 2022:

Greenley Road History: 

SR 49 Congested Corridor Plan: 

If you would like to stay informed of important project developments, and later be added to a e-mail list, please contact:

Shannon Thaggard

sthaggard@co.tuolumne.ca.us

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