SUNNYVALE (CBS SF) — Work has officially begun to improve a notorious stretch of roadway dubbed the “Mathilda Monster” by commuters who get stuck in the swirling knot of cars near the intersection of state Highway 237 and U.S. 101.

The Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority and Caltrans held a groundbreaking ceremony on a $42 million project they hope will ease congestion at the infamous intersection.

“What we’re trying to do here is eliminate all of the traffic congestion that exists on this pretty complicated interchange where we have two freeways and two major roads coming together at the same place,” said state Sen. Jim Beall, who helped secure funding for the project.

The project will widen Mathilda Ave. to three lanes of traffic in each direction. It will also add an on-ramp to southbound Highway 101 in addition to bike lanes.

Transportation officials say traffic in the area has grown progressively worse over time, mirroring the rise of several tech campuses nearby.

The project does leave one glaring need unaddressed: a direct interchange between Highway 237 and southbound 101.

“We are working with VTA and Sunnyvale to find that long-term solution,” said Caltrans spokesman Doahn Nguyen. VTA estimates construction will wrap up by mid-2020.

 

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