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With lawsuit paused, El Campo Road and 3 other Hwy. 101 crossings will be closed this week

After a controversial lawsuit delayed the project, construction to prevent left-hand turns at El Campo Road and Highway 101 is expected to finally get underway this week, Caltrans announced Monday.

The project — which will stop left-hand turns at El Campo Road and three other Highway 101 crossings between Arroyo Grande and Nipomo — was expected to begin May 13, but was put on hold after Vintage Wine Estates filed a lawsuit in Sacramento.

Vintage Wine Estates, which owns nearby Laetitia Winery, claimed Caltrans didn’t properly examine the project before scheduling construction and implied the rush was politically motivated.

The lawsuit has since been put on pause — though not dropped entirely, according to a Vintage Wine Estates representative on Saturday — after company officials met with the family of Jordan Grant, a Cal Poly student killed at the El Campo Road crossing last year.

Grant’s father, James Grant, has formed a community partnership with homeowners and Vintage Wine Estates officials to push for safety improvements along that stretch of Highway 101.

In response, Vintage Wine Estates decided to not block construction at the deadly crossing and asked a judge to rescind the temporary stay on the project.

Now that the project is no longer halted, Caltrans says it expects to begin work on the intersections Tuesday night.

According to a news release, motorists will encounter lane closures along northbound Highway 101 this week from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. and southbound from 8 p.m. to 5:30 a.m.

The work will be finished by Friday, Caltrans said.

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Kaytlyn Leslie writes about business and development for The San Luis Obispo Tribune. Hailing from Nipomo, she also covers city governments and happenings in the South County region, including Arroyo Grande, Pismo Beach and Grover Beach. She joined The Tribune in 2013 after graduating from Cal Poly with her journalism degree.
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