MORGAN HOOVER, NEWS-PRESS CORRESPONDENT
June 18, 2009 7:30 AM
A major headache for motorists traveling between the Santa Ynez Valley and South Coast came to an end Wednesday with the completion of so-called safety and operational improvements on State Route 154.
Construction on the $5 million project, which has led to lane closures, exit closings and congestion from Santa Barbara to State Route 246, began in July 2008.
Goals included an improved eastbound turnout area, turning lanes into Vista Point, turning lanes at Paradise Road and westbound passing lanes east of State Route 246 and turning lanes at the intersection of Routes 154 and 246.
Caltrans was in charge of oversight for the project, and CHP patrols participated in monitoring safety through the construction zones.
Representatives from a variety of agencies, including the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments, were on hand for a completion ceremony Wednesday.
The project was funded through Measure D, Santa Barbara County's half-cent transportation tax.