About Us

District 3 Management

The Division of Planning, Local Assistance and Sustainability (DPLAS) is an interdisciplinary team of transportation planners, engineers, and support staff work cooperatively together to meet California's transportation needs while being sensitive to the needs of our communities and partners in the planning process.

Amarjeet S. Benipal, District 3 Director

Amarjeet S. Benipal has more than 30 years of experience with Caltrans, including his current assignment since September 2014 as the District 3 Director, which covers the following 11 counties: Butte, Colusa, El Dorado, Glenn, Nevada, Placer, Sacramento, Sierra, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba. He also has project delivery responsibility for the 22 counties that make up Districts 1 and 2 of the North Region. Some of the notable projects the District has accomplished under his leadership include “Raise 80” (a $36 million project increasing the vertical clearance of nine bridge structures in Placer County to federal standards), “80 Across the Top” (a $133 million Interstate 80 rehabilitation and HOV project in Sacramento) and overseeing more the 20 water-quality improvement projects on state highways all around the Lake Tahoe Basin at a cost of more than $500 million. For the 2017-18 fiscal year, District 3 has 24 signed contracts for projects valued at more than $276 million.

Some upcoming projects the District is undertaking under Benipal’s watch include the $368.3 U.S. 50 Multimodal Corridor Enhancement Project in Sacramento County, which includes building HOV lanes and rehabilitating the pavement from Interstate 5 to Watt Avenue, and a $315.4 million Interstate 5 rehabilitation and HOV lane project from Elk Grove to downtown Sacramento.

Prior to being named the District 3 Director, Benipal served as the Acting District 10 Director (Stockton) from August 2013 through June 2014. He also has served as the State Pavement Engineer and the Deputy District Director for Design, Project Development, Program/Project Management, and Design in North Region (Districts 1, 2 and 3) and in District 7 (Los Angeles).

With more than 25 years of managerial experience, Benipal has managed and provided direction to more than 2,000 multi-functional professionals in both the capital and non-capital programs and manages an operating budget of more than $300 million as well as 243 active construction contracts valued at more than $1.2 billion

Sukhvinder (Sue) Takhar, Deputy District Director | DPLAS

Sukhvinder (Sue) Takhar is the Deputy District Director for the Division of Planning, Local Assistance, and Sustainability.

Sue began her career with Caltrans in 1999 in Headquarters in the Division of Rail and Mass Transportation. In 2000 she joined Caltrans District 3 Division of Planning, Local Assistance, and Sustainability (DPLAS) as a Transportation Planner and moved through the ranks, overseeing various offices in DPLAS prior to being promoted to a Supervising Transportation Planner in 2016.

Prior to her current appointment, Sue served as the acting Deputy District Director for DPLAS. Her previous roles include Acting Branch Chief for the Right of Way Coordination unit, where her team was responsible for overseeing the delivery of Right of Way Estimates and Certificates, Project Manager in Program Project Management, and serving as the D3 PID Program Manager. In 2018 Sue took a rotation to Caltrans HQ in the Division of Financial Programming, assisting with SB 1 and supplemental items for CTC meetings. She returned to District 3 in 2019, where she leads staff in providing excellent service to the cities and counties within the district.

Prior to working with Caltrans, Sue worked for two large insurance firms as a Commercial Accounts Underwriter for 11 years. She is a graduate of California State University, Sacramento and earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with concentrations in Finance and Insurance. She also earned a certificate in Land Use and Environmental Planning from UC Davis.