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December 5, 2022

Local Scene: $500K for San Benito County broadband

Construction on the Highway 156 Corridor Improvement Project will result in a long-term closure of San Juan Hollister Road starting this week

Prepare for lane closures

Construction on the Highway 156 Corridor Improvement Project will result in a long-term closure of San Juan Hollister Road starting this week, according to the California Department of Transportation.

Beginning Oct. 24, San Juan Hollister Road will be closed between Union Road and Business Route 156, says a press release from Caltrans. The realignment of San Juan Hollister Road is part of the Corridor Improvement Project. This closure is scheduled to be in place until May 2023.

Travel on Highway 156 will be unaffected by the closure of San Juan Hollister Road.

Also, beginning Oct. 26, there will be temporary daytime closures of Union Road between Highway 156 and San Juan Oaks Road, Caltrans continued.

Flaggers will stop travelers on Union Road every 15 to 20 minutes to permit heavy machinery to carry their loads across the roadway. Travelers can expect delays of up to five minutes. This daytime flagging operation is scheduled to remain in place until Nov. 10.

The San Benito Route 156 Improvement Project will construct a four-lane expressway immediately south of the existing Hwy. 156 alignment. The 5.2-mile project will begin in San Juan Bautista at The Alameda and continue to just east of Hwy. 156 Business Route (Fourth Street) in Hollister.

During construction, access will be closed from Hwy. 156 to Mission Vineyard Road in San Juan Bautista. Also, travelers will not be able to access San Juan Hollister Road from Union Road.

Updates for the San Benito Route 156 Improvement Project can be found on the Transportation Updates page of the Council of San Benito County Governments at:

http://sanbenitocog.org/transportation-updates/

The contractor for this project is Teichert Construction of Sacramento, CA. This project is expected to conclude in Summer 2025.

Jazz @ Gavilan Concert returns 

The Jazz @ Gavilan Concert returns Nov. 3 at 7:30pm at the Gavilan College Theater. 

The show will feature two groups, including Gavilan faculty member pianist, Dahveed Behroozi, and tenor saxophonist, Ken Moran, performing as a duet, as well as the Gilroy High School Jazz Ensemble. 

Band Director Mitch Goldsmith will be leading the Gilroy High Jazz Ensemble, performing newer renditions of their jazz repertoire.  

Both Behroozi and Moran will be playing original material, as well as selections from the American Songbook. Both musicians have earned high accolades across the international jazz scene. 

General admission is $20, but students get in for free with their Student ID. Tickets can be purchased online through Brown Paper Tickets at brownpapertickets.com/event/5591438, the Gavilan College Bookstore, BookSmart in Morgan Hill, or on the day of the event, at the door.  

County gets $500K for broadband

San Benito County will receive about $500,000 in Local Agency Technical Assistance grants for broadband upgrades, in an initiative to support efforts to close the digital divide and promote local digital equity and infrastructure, according to a press release from the Monterey Bay Economic Partnership. 

The grants are awarded by the California Public Utilities Commission and were announced on Oct. 21. Statewide, this round of grant funding constitutes the largest award of state broadband financing to local governments to date, totaling $14 million to 28 local governments in California, says the press release. 

Rural counties often struggle with broadband access because of the challenges that providers face in making infrastructure investments economically feasible, while geography and affordability can also compound the barriers to equal access.

“The relatively high cost of deployment in many rural areas has historically left these communities underserved by traditional providers,” said CPUC Commissioner Darcie L. Houck. “Technical Assistance grants will aid local agencies and Tribes in their efforts to fill the gaps left behind, helping to ensure economic opportunity and public safety for rural residents, businesses, and visitors.”

Staff Report
A staff member edited this provided article.

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