Press Release
January 10, 2006

Ragsdale Drive Opens Today

Just in time for the new year, the new signalized intersection at Ragsdale Drive is opening today ahead of schedule! The Highway 68-Ragsdale Drive road safety improvement project—to widen a portion of Hwy 68, create merge lanes, and install a signal at Ragsdale Drive—has been sponsored by the Transportation Agency of Monterey County (TAMC) in cooperation with the City of Monterey.

The projected 6 month project, which began in mid-July, has been on schedule and within budget throughout the construction period thanks to months of good weather and hard work by management and construction teams to keep the project moving and minimize delays. URS Corp has provided construction management for the project under contract to TAMC, and Pavex, a division of Graniterock, has been the construction contractor.

Graniterock was founded on Valentine’s Day, 1900, when its first operation, the A.R. Wilson Quarry, was opened in Aromas and soon became a heavy engineering contractor. Its California Contractor’s License—#22—demonstrates how long the Company has been in business. Graniterock will soon open a new Branch location in Cupertino on De Anza Boulevard supplying construction building and landscaping materials. There are already plant or branch locations in Aromas, Felton, Hollister, Monterey Peninsula, Oakland, Redwood City, Salinas, Santa Cruz, San Jose, and So. San Francisco. Graniterock’s Pavex Construction Division operates from area offices in Redwood City, San Jose, Oakland, and Watsonville, and performs large work such as highway or runway expansion projects, as well as commercial and residential projects. The Company’s Corporate Offices have been located in Watsonville since 1900.

Traffic disruption during construction has been minimal due to successful use of detours on South Boundary and York Roads and implementation of a construction plan that has kept traffic lanes open in each direction along Hwy 68 during most of the construction activity.

The opening of Ragsdale Drive will now allow continuous right hand merge turns at the intersection of Hwy 68 and Ragsdale Drive. Work on the road improvement project has included:

  • completion of various utility line relocations, conduit installation, and replacement of water and drainage pipes;
  • completion of grading for lane widening;
  • completion of hillside grading, stabilization and landscaping at the Ragsdale intersection to improve sight-distance at that location;
  • installation of base road pavement in preparation for final paving and striping;
  • relocation and protection of a small wetland area;
  • replacement and installation of landscaping materials at various points along the project route;
  • installation of a right merge lane and guard rails, and retrofitting of a public transit shelter at the intersection of Hwy 68 and Hwy 218 (Canyon Del Rey) near Tarpy’s restaurant and the Stone Creek shopping center;
  • installation of final overlay paving;
  • stripping of lanes and crosswalk areas;
  • upgrade and replacement of the signal currently in operation at Hwy 68/Hwy 218; and,
  • installation of the new signal at Ragsdale Drive.

During the next 2–3 weeks, the construction team will complete all the minor work items left on the project. A Completion Ceremony is planned on January 18 at the corner of 68 and Ragsdale Drive at 2:00 pm.

For more information, contact:
Jeff Morgan, TAMC, Asst. Transportation Planning Engineer, 831.775.0903