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Measure K tax is making yet another major Manteca road project possible
A project that will convert the McKinley Avenue undercrossing of the 120 Bypass into an interchange is now fully funded. - photo by Bulletin file photo

Spend two dollars on a taxable transaction in San Joaquin County and you are charged a penny that helps keep you and your neighbors on the move.

That penny — the result of a half-cent sales tax on every dollar spent — is part of the Measure K transportation program first approved by voters for 20 years in 1990 and then reauthorized in 2006 for another 30 years by a 78 percent margin.

It is what is funding the final $7.7 million needed for Manteca to move forward with the $30.7 million project expected to break ground in the coming year.

Those pennies add up to 25 percent of the tab for building the interchange identified by the San Joaquin Council of Governments of being a key regional arterial that will benefit economic growth in both Manteca and Lathrop.

The City Council when they meet Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Civic Center, 1001 W. Center St., is being asked to approve paperwork needed to secure the Measure K Regional Arterial Program grant. The balance of the funding includes $12.3 million from the State Transportation Improvement Program and $10.7 million from the City of Manteca for the local match.

It is just the latest example of how Measure K is helping improving the transportation system not just in Manteca but throughout San Joaquin County to improve commutes, enhance the movement of goods as well as provide additional money for local road maintenance.

Manteca secured $2.1 million in Measure K pedestrian and bicycling funds for four other projects that have just started or are about to get underway.

$1,440,000 will go toward the cost of Manteca’s first multi-use path and bridge crossing the 120 Bypass that’s designed for bicyclists and pedestrians. The project planned such south of the Union Road interchange carries a price tag of $1.5 million. It is being built in conjunction with the $23.7 million diverging diamond interchange — California’s first — the city has approved a contract for Teichert Construction to build at the 120 Bypass and Union Road.

$144,000 to pay for the cost of highly visible solid green bicycle lanes as part of the Yosemite Avenue corridor pavement upgrade project from Main Street to Cottage Avenue that is just starting to get underway.

$210,000 to pay for the cost of highly visible solid green bicycle lanes as part of the Main Street corridor pavement upgrade project from Atherton Drive to Yosemite Avenue that has also just started.

$240,000 for developing a Non-motorized Transportation Plan: The plan will highlight development related projects and address connecting existing facilities to other existing facilities as well as connections to future development. The grant is covering 80 percent of the plan’s cost.

The biggest Measure K-related project finished recently in Manteca was the widening of Highway 99 from the Crosstown Freeway in Stockton to Yosemite Avenue in Manteca  — a distance of 13.1 miles — that included new interchanges at Lathrop Road and French Camp Road. SJCOG used $36 million in Measure K sales tax receipts to leverage $89 million from the $19.9 billion Proposition 1B transportation bond approved by state voters in 2006. 

Measure K currently sends right around $1 million each year to the city’s coffers to augment annual street maintenance projects. A Measure K loan to the state in the 1990s allowed elevating the 120 Bypass to full freeway status four years ahead of schedule.

Measure K has funded a large chunk of other transportation projects in Manteca such as the $12 million transit center and the 3.4-mile Tidewater Bikeway. It also made it possible to launch the Altamont Corrridor Express commuter train service.

By 2041, Measure M is projected to deliver $2.552 billion worth of transportation projects throughout San Joaquin County.

To contact Dennis Wyatt, email