As part of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s landmark $1.1 billion Clean California initiative, Caltrans is awarding $312 million for 126 beautification projects along the state highway system – including 17 beautification and safety-related projects in Los Angeles and Ventura counties.
Designed to foster cultural connections and civic pride, the projects are expected to generate 3,600 jobs as part of the multiyear initiative led by Caltrans to remove trash and beautify community gateways and public areas along highways, streets, and roads while creating thousands of jobs for Californians. 98 percent of the projects will benefit historically underserved or excluded communities.
“Caltrans partnered with communities throughout California to identify and develop projects that meet the specific needs of each individual region while also enhancing and beautifying public spaces,” said Toks Omishakin, Caltrans director. “By working together, we are better able to restore public pride in our communities and help change the habits that create litter in the first place.”
Developed in close collaboration with tribal and local governments, nonprofits and businesses, the 126 state beautification projects include art installations, green space, and proposals that improve safety and promote community connections. Construction begins in April 2022. A full list of projects can be found here.
Governor Newsom made the announcement on Friday in San Francisco, at the site of a Clean California project that will include a tree nursery, dog park, and other features.
Some of the Projects located in Los Angeles and Ventura counties include:
Interstate 5 Sun Valley Beautification. The project will improve the aesthetic appearance of roadside and interchanges at Roscoe Boulevard, Sunland Boulevard, Penrose Street, Tuxford Street, Lankershim Boulevard, Laurel Canyon Boulevard, Sheldon Street, Branford Street, Osbourne Street, Terra Bella Street, Van Nuys Boulevard, and Paxton Street by installing wall fencing & vines, restoring irrigation systems, replacing dead plants with new plants, installing new irrigation systems and stabilizing eroding soil areas with decorative and/or colored Rock Slope Protection (RSP). Installing a rock blanket, stamped concrete, and slope paving. Estimated cost: $6.053 million. Estimated completion date: June 10, 2023.
U.S. Route 101 Lankershim to Beaudry Beautification. The project will beautify the landscape areas of the on/off-ramps, and slopes along U.S. Route 101 in Los Angeles County from Lankershim Blvd to N. Beaudry Ave. A decorative sculpture and rock design, California native plants and new decorative colored concrete will be installed. Overhead signs will be enhanced by removal of barbed wire and installation of dimpled sleeves on columns, and irrigation will be upgraded for water conservation and theft prevention. Estimated cost: $3.151 million. Estimated completion date is April 3, 2023.
State Route 118 Simi Valley Beautification. The project will enhance six interchanges in Simi Valley by replacing dying groundcover with aesthetically pleasing rock cobble. Native, drought tolerant plants to control erosion and provide pollinator habitat will be planted in selected areas at local streets to enhance the visual experience for the local community. As the community requested, each interchange will receive a different plant palette and hardscape or aesthetic motif to provide a unique place-making aesthetic to each location. Estimated cost: $3.924 million. Estimated completion date is June 16, 2023.
Interstate 10 to State Route 60 Safety Enhancement. The project includes installation of esthetically pleasing durable fencing that will prevent unsafe access at 28 locations, reduce litter, and enhance neighborhood safety in underserved communities. Estimated cost: $3.866 million. Estimated completion date is June 20, 2023.
Interstate 710/Compton Paramount Beautification. This project will enhance 1.5 miles of roadside by adding trees, shrubs, ground covers, replacement of irrigation systems and installation of artwork and art elements to revitalize the area and reflect the cities’ historical values. Estimated cost: $3.913 million. Estimated completion date: June 20, 2023.
In addition to these awards for Clean California projects along the state right-of-way, the Governor in December announced the availability of almost $300 million in grants to cities and counties for local projects that will clean and beautify neighborhood streets, parks, and transit centers throughout California. Caltrans will review the project proposals from cities, counties, transit agencies, tribal governments, and other governmental entities and announce grant recipients on March 1. The Governor’s California Blueprint proposes an additional $100 million to fund additional local Clean California grants.
Over three years, Clean California will remove an additional 1.2 million cubic yards, or 21,000 tons, of trash from the state system alone – enough to fill the Rose Bowl three times over. The initiative has already resulted in 6,300 tons of litter removed from the State Highway System and, to date, Caltrans has hired 528 new team members, including 428 maintenance workers who collect litter and perform maintenance duties like graffiti removal.