State Route 49 Corridor Improvement

Project Description:

This project improves safety, operations, and mobility on State Route 49 in Nevada County from Allison Ranch Road/La Barr Meadows Road (Post Mile 10.8) to the McKnight Way interchange (PM 13.3) in Nevada County. The project proposes to: 1) construct north- and southbound truck climbing lanes to improve traffic flow and operations, 2) Reduce the severity and frequency of collisions at public road intersections and roadways with a 14’-22’ concrete median barrier, southbound right turn lanes and at grade, access-controlled intersections, 3) Improve the roadway to meet current design standards with 8’-10’ shoulders and improve vertical curve sight distance, 4) Provide a 12’ x 12’ animal crossing that would assist in avoiding collisions between vehicles and animals, and 5) Implement pedestrian and Class III bicycle facilities while providing adequate shoulders for disabled vehicles and California Highway Patrol enforcement activities.

This project will be built in three phases of construction based on funding availability.


Purpose and Need:


The purpose of this project is to improve safety, traffic operations, and pedestrian and bicyclist mobility through the project limits as well as upgrade shoulder widths to current standards.

The numerous access points adjacent to SR 49 create conflicting movements of local traffic accessing the highway. Several collisions, some involving fatalities, and many “near misses” have occurred at these locations. Consolidating multiple access points to a single access point at a signalized intersection via frontage roads is expected to reduce the collision rate and improve traffic operations.


There is a need for wider shoulders to accommodate pedestrians, bicyclists and disabled vehicles. The existing highway has paved and/or gravel shoulders that vary from 0 to 8-foot wide; but more typically, these shoulders are non-existent or are much narrower than 8-foot. In addition, the existing two-lane highway’s current Level-of-Service (LOS) cannot accommodate future traffic increases.


Cost Estimate:

Support Cost:  $16,600,000

Capital Cost: $144,300,000 (UNFUNDED)

Total Project Cost: $160,900,000 ($152,800,000 UNFUNDED)



Project Approval & Environmental Document: Fall 2021

Design Completed: Fall 2025

Advertise Project: Fall 2025

Begin Construction: Winter 2026

Complete Construction: Winter 2028



Wednesday, September 22, 2021 from 6 to 7 p.m.


  • Log in to view the virtual presentation at; a WebEx account is not required.
    • Meeting number 2487 319 3260; passcode 49corridor
  • Listen in by phone at 1-408-418-9388. Please enter meeting number 2487 319 3260##
    • WebEx phone attendees will not be able to view the presentation and will remain muted. Those wishing to ask questions are advised to utilize the conference call option.

Conference Call:

  • Connect directly with a Caltrans staff member by dialing 1-888-570-6350, participant code 4170217.
    • Please note that you will not be able to view the presentation or interact with presenters. A Caltrans staff member will be available to pass along any questions or comments.



09.09.21 Second Public Meeting Scheduled for State Route 49 Corridor Improvement Project

08.26.21 Caltrans Seeks Public Feedback on State Route 49 Corridor Improvement Project


Project Contacts:

Sam Vandell, Project Manager, (530) 741-4593;