James Sinclair has the depressing news of the latest eastward expansion of the SR 180 expressway:
This latest round of expansion isn’t the last. The poor town of Centerville seems to have gotten itself in the way. The next round – scheduled for 2016 – will probably involve demolishing this entire village.
That would be too bad. Centerville has an awesome fruit stand. But it’s just the beginning — segments 4c and 4d would extend the expressway way up to Cove Rd. It is interesting how the CHSRA Fresno-Madera starter line gets all the criticism for being a train-to-nowhere, but nobody really talks about the highways-to-nowhere.
And it isn’t just Fresno. Merced County is currently constructing it’s own highway-to-nowhere, the Atwater-Merced expressway:
Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno, commended the partnership between local government and the state in moving the project forward. ”We are making an investment in Merced County’s future,” Costa said on Friday. “We are living off the investments our parents made years ago. If California is going to remain the Golden State, we need to be willing to make the same investments.”
The Atwater-Merced Expressway Project could open the door for Ferrari Ranch, a proposed 202-acre multiuse project planned for the southeast corner of Atwater just outside the city limit. The development, planned since 2006, calls for a hotel, restaurants, a hospital, offices, big-box retailers, smaller shops and other business spaces.
“It all sounds like jobs to me, and we can use it in our area,” said Merced Mayor Stan Thurston.
It sounds like sprawl to me. Here is a map of the new expressway (note the city of Merced in the lower right corner).