After decades of waiting, commuters can celebrate the groundbreaking of construction on the Caldecott Tunnel Fourth Bore, scheduled for this Friday at 11 am.
The project aims to alleviate well-known traffic congestion along the bottleneck between Orinda and Oakland by creating a fourth bore in the existing Caldecott Tunnel. The estimated $420 million project cost will be funded by a combination of Contra Costa County voter-approved sales taxes ($123 million), a $1 bridge toll increase approved by Bay Area voters ($50 million), and Federal economic stimulus funds ($197 million).
Excavation will be done primarily with two machines called roadheaders, one of which is the largest ever to operate in the United States. The model that will be used for the tunnel excavation is the German-made T-Series Wirth Roadheader, shown in the video below.
Caltrans spokesman Jeff Weiss estimates the project will create 5,000-6,000 jobs and anticipates that the project will finish in early 2014.
Caldecott Tunnel Fourth Bore Project Stats:
- Estimated cost: $420 million
- Length: 3,389 feet
- Estimated length of construction: 3 years
- Jobs created: 5,000-6,000
- Number of lanes (in each direction) when completed: 4
- Safety features: Road shoulder and seven escape passages connecting third and fourth bores
For more about the project, visit the official site of the Caldecott Fourth Bore Project.
Long road to Caldecott fourth bore ends Friday with groundbreaking – Contra Costa Times
Construction to Begin on Caldecott Tunnel – KCBS