MOUNTAIN AREA — The massive hazard tree removal project that has been underway along Highway 41 and Highway 49 in the foothills since last fall has been given the funding to continue, according to the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans).
Caltrans spokesman Cory Burkarth announced today that $3 million more in funding has been allocated for the project, and operations are expected to continue until around Memorial Day.
At that point, Caltrans plans to stop working so as not to interrupt the tourism season.
The work was originally planned to be a 150-day, $5-million dollar tree removal project, which began on Monday, Oct. 3. As of that date, 2,300 trees on SR-41 and an additional 188 trees on SR-49 had been marked for removal.
As of Mar. 7, some 7,250 dead hazardous trees have been removed, according to Burkarth. There are currently 15,000 to 16,000 trees that still need to be removed in the area, he says, which is why Caltrans received more funding for the project.
The additional funding comes from the State Highway Operations and Protection Program (SHOPP) and the Protective Betterments Program.