Here are answers to some of the questions readers posed last week for Caltrans:

–When will the section of freeway in Cotati change from a 55-MPH zone to a regular 65 zone? Anthony

Caltrans officials said once crews finish putting the final paving and striping on Highway 101 there, they’ll boost the speed limit to 65.

–Why are you stuffing everybody into two lanes at 3pm creating a traffic slowdown when in Marin it’s 4:30 and things run pretty good? Same on the end time too. Steve

Several other readers also asked about carpool lanes, questioning whether they’re needed at all.

Caltrans spokesman Bob Haus basically said the carpool lanes are here to stay and over time more people will take advantage of them. Once the Wilfred Avenue/Commerce Boulevard overpass opens this summer — late August or early September — the carpool lanes will extend from downtown Windsor to northern Petaluma. As a result, Haus said, drivers will realize that by carpooling they can bypass much of the traffic and more will start carpooling. So it’s kind of like “Field of Dreams”: If you build it, they will come.

What was the point of installing metering lights if they are never turned on? Joseph

Haus said the plan is to wait until the 101 widening project is completed. So no firm date on that.

What’s the upcoming sequence of events for the Highway 101 Commerce Blvd. overpass? Will all of the existing lanes be moved to the new bridges? When is this expected to happen? When will both sets of bridges be used? Daniel

By late August or early September, the Wilfred/Commerce project will be finished, and southbound traffic will be moved over to the new overpasses. Caltrans plans some lane shifting before then and will announce them soon.

When are you going to put in the bypass in Willits? We have waited so long for this since at least 1990 since it was brought up to fix our problems. It is unsafe for pedestrians to walk across the street, especially on Fridays. It takes 30 minutes to go one mile, please help. Jill

To read a Press Democrat story on the bypass getting state funding, CLICK HERE.

Caltrans says work could begin late this year with completion in 2016, but environmental groups have sued to stop the project, so the start date is up in the air.


For other questions, Caltrans asked for time to do some checking, so we’ll publish those answers when they come in.


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