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May 28, 2023

City says contractor will repair zig-zagging Ladd Lane

Striping mistake in Hollister goes viral nationwide

A contractor’s blunder in Hollister that resulted in some oddly painted lines on Ladd Lane has made for some laughs nationwide and frustrations locally.

City officials worked to redesign Ladd Lane to make it more friendly for bicyclists and hamper speeders in the area. But the two subcontractors for the project, Sierra Traffic Markings and Graham Contractors, mistook the plans for gradual curving lines and instead painted zig-zags on the stretch of road, according to City Manager Brett Miller. The general contractor for the project was Precision Grade. 

As a result, drivers attempting to be good stewards of the road have to swerve left and right to stay in between the lines, while others give up quickly and drive straight through.

Miller said the project cost $596,336.50, and said crews will be back “soon” to fix the lines. The city will not have to pay extra for the repairs. 

Ladd Lane currently looks like it was pulled straight out of the “Mario Kart” video game, and locals took advantage of that over the weekend.

On July 30, the city’s recreation department hosted the Wonky Street Kart Racing event, closing down the section of Ladd Lane and encouraging participants to ride their bikes or kick their scooters through the labyrinth of lines.

Hollister’s humorous misfortune has gone viral, and even was featured prominently on a recent episode of “The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.”

“This is why you just don’t tell city employees to ‘just have fun with it,’” Fallon quipped to the laughs of the audience.

Roundabout update

Numerous local street repair and upgrade projects are underway in Hollister and San Benito County. 

One of the most high-profile of these is a new roundabout at the intersection of Highways 156 and 25, which is funded by Caltrans. Work on this project started in May, with grading and fill-in construction off the side of the roadway, according to Caltrans. 

More intensive roadwork on the north Hollister intersection is expected to resume soon, requiring lane closures and traffic control. 

The contractor for the $10.7 million roundabout project is GraniteRock. 

Michael Moore
Michael Moore is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a reporter and editor for the Morgan Hill Times, Hollister Free Lance and Gilroy Dispatch since 2008. During that time, he has covered crime, breaking news, local government, education, entertainment and more.

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