CHOLAME — Recently the California Transportation Commission approved nearly $134 million in project funds to construct an overpass at the Cholame “Y” intersection on Highway 41/46. The deadly section of highway has been known locally as “blood alley” for years. Recently, a four-car collision involving 11 people left two dead and four with major injuries.
“This section of highway is critical to our economy, but currently has a fatality rate that is three-times the state average,” said assemblyman Jordan Cunningham. “These investments will save lives.”
The Cholame “Y” funding fix is part of a larger package of funding projects going to San Luis Obispo County totaling $261 million. Early last year, Cunningham worked with CalTrans and the California Transportation Commission leadership to find ways to fix the intersection. At that time, Cunningham said the situation was “unacceptable.” Major deaths at and near the intersection go back decades.
The new overpass will create an important grade separation at the interchange with the eastbound lanes that go to Route 41 for Fresno, as an overpass over the westbound traffic from Route 46 to Bakersfield. The final project would include a total of four lanes — two lanes east and two lanes west to match with the four lanes in Kern County.