PASO ROBLES — Construction on the Highway 46 East widening project in the Cholame area will include a traffic switch onto a segment of the newly constructed lanes beginning Tuesday, January 16. This traffic switch onto a new alignment of what will eventually become the westbound lanes of Hwy. 46 East will include two-way travel from just east of the Shandon Rest Area to just west of the Hwy. 46/State Route 41 “Wye” Interchange. This temporary traffic switch will be in place while construction proceeds on the new eastbound lanes of the highway.

Businesses will remain open during this traffic shift. Travelers will maintain access to Bitterwater Road and the Jack Ranch Café via a temporary driveway constructed just east of Bitterwater Road. 

This temporary traffic shift is anticipated to be in place until early summer 2024. Electronic message boards will be activated informing travelers about this roadwork.


The contractor for this $116 million project is Atkinson Construction of Irvine, CA. This project is expected to be complete in the Winter of 2024. 

Atkinson Construction is also the contractor for the Highway 46/State Route 41 “Wye” Interchange Project also under construction and includes a widening of Hwy. 46 from west of Davis Road to west of Antelope Road. This project is expected to be complete in the Spring of 2026.

This widening follows four completed phases from Paso Robles leading to the Hwy. 46/41 intersection. The $47 million widening of Highway 46 East from McMillan Canyon Road to Lucy Brown Road was completed in 2019. The $38 million widening from Almond Drive to McMillan Canyon Road was completed in 2016. The widening from Geneseo Road to east of Almond Drive was completed in 2014 while the widening from Airport Road to Geneseo Road wrapped up in 2010.  

Road information and updates can also be found on Caltrans District 5 Social Media platforms: Twitter at @CaltransD5, Facebook at Caltrans Central Coast (District 5), and Instagram at Caltrans_D5.