Construction along Highline Road is likely to result in delays of 20 minutes or more and at times the busy road will be closed completely between now and early August.
But the result will be paved shoulders, improved drainage and eventually bike lanes.
The $1.13 million project is under the direction of Kern County with funding by federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality programs according to Lynn Brooks of the roads department. Granite Construction has the contract.
Six foot paved shoulders will be built on each side of the entire length of Highline from Banducci Road to Tehachapi-Willow Springs Road. Drainage work is currently underway between Banducci Road and Backles Lane.
Initially the new pavement will not be striped as bike lanes, but according to Second District Supervisor Zach Scrivner, the additional pavement will eventually allow designation as bike lanes, adding an important piece to the dream of a safe network of bike lanes throughout the greater Tehachapi area.
Patricia Ebel, transportation development engineer for the roads department said there will be an edge stripe installed at the edge of travel way with the project to define the limits of motor vehicle lane. The remainder of the pavement can be used for other modes of travel, including bicycles.
"However, to make it an official 'bicycle lane' we will have to eliminate parking along the corridor," she said. "This process takes a few months, because it has to go before the Board of Supervisors for approval, and then to County Counsel for preparation of the ordinance. Once that is complete, we can sign and place the bicycle symbol markings." Photo by Ed Gordon
Granite Construction crew working on drainage lines along Highline Road in preparation for road widening.