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July, 2017


Mr. Brian Dahle

California State Assembly

State Capitol, Suite 4098

Sacramento, CA 94249


Subject: State Highway 174 Proposed Safety Project


Dear Assemblyman Brian Dahle,


Caltrans is proposing to widen and straighten a 1.9 mile length of Highway 174 in Nevada County, for a cost of over $28,000,000, under the pretext that this particular stretch of road is especially unsafe. A review of the records, obtained from the CHP Accident Data Base, has shown this safety concern is bogus. Out of 12 years of data, Caltrans only selected three years to analyze, including the snowy winter of 2011, to show this stretch of road is unsafe. These three years had an exceptional number of accidents and the only fatalities in the 12 year period.


This project will require confiscating over 14 acres of land from the homeowners along the route. Over 1700 conifer trees, plus an undisclosed number of oaks and other smaller deciduous trees, will be removed. No formal EIR has been filed.


Based on what has happened on other roads that have been widened and straightened, the result of this proposed Caltrans Project will be an increase in serious injury accidents because more drivers will speed. Highway 174 is safe at the current speed limit of 45 mph. There is no valid reason to spend this amount of money here, when many other roads in the state are in poor condition.


I would like to hear what actions you will take to investigate and, hopefully stop, this expensive, wasteful, and destructive project.


Yours truly,