Merced Seismic Retrofit

Project Facts


The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) proposes to seismically retrofit seven bridges in Merced County to increase their structural integrity in case of a seismic event and upgrade deficient bridge railings to current standards.

Project Benefits

The purpose of the project is to upgrade the following bridges to current seismic standards:

  1. Bear Creek Bridges, both northbound (Bridge Number, 39-0009 L) and southbound (Bridge Number 39-0009 R) on State Route 59 in the City of Merced.

  2. San Joaquin River (Santa Rita) Bridge eastbound (Bridge Number, 39-0028 L) on State Route 152 in Merced County.

  3. Eastside Bypass Channel Bridges, both eastbound (Bridge Number 39-0034R) and westbound (Bridge Number 39-0034R) on State Route 152 in Merced County.

  4. Los Banos Creek/West Branch Mud Slough (Bridge Number 39-0090) on State Route 140 in Merced County.

  5. San Joaquin River Bridge (Bridge Number. 39-0092) on State Route 140 in Merced County.


The bridges were identified as seismically vulnerable by the Office of Earthquake Engineering, and the Office of Structure Maintenance and Investigations identified a need to upgrade the non-standard bridge railings at each project location. The bridges are vulnerable to collapse during an earthquake if not retrofitted to withstand a maximum credible earthquake event.

Five of the structures were found to have obsolete bridge railing. Under the provisions of Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21), each state uses the nationally defined performance measures for bridges, which identify a bridge’s condition as good, fair or poor. The project bridges have non-standard railings in “poor” condition.

Funding Breakdown

Local:  $133,500,000
Estimated Total Project Cost: $133,500,00


City of Tulare

Project Contact Info

District 10
Public Information Office: (209) 948-7543


Environmental Document - April 2020 (PDF)