In this file photo, Jocelyn Cuevas is interviewed by a local radio station in Rexland Acres Park. She helped spark an effort that’s drawn millions of dollars for sidewalks and other improvements in Rexland Acres.

A long-awaited sidewalks and street safety project in Rexland Acres is scheduled for approval by the Kern County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday.

The project will install miles of sidewalks, traffic signs and crosswalks in a county pocket in southeast Bakersfield that has experienced high rates of collisions between motorists and pedestrians.

A community effort to improve the area led by 17-year-old Golden Valley High student Jocelyn Cuevas helped spur the project forward. Residents of the area have said streets flood when it rains, and the unpaved shoulders of the road pool with water.

Advocates, which included the Greenfield Walking Group, went door to door to campaign for the project, gathering signatures and drawings by elementary school students to show local leaders.

Caltrans awarded the county a $5.6 million grant to install the roadway improvements. At Tuesday’s meeting, supervisors are slated to approve a $9.7 million contract with Bowman Asphalt Inc. to build the project.

The project will encapsulate four miles of sidewalks, 5.3 miles of bike lanes, 66 curb ramps, 75 new traffic signs, 11 flashing stop signs, 19 crosswalks, six new street lights and three new four-way stops in an area near South Union Avenue and East Pacheco Road.

Updates for the project can be found on Kern County Public Works’ website,

While the Rexland Acres contract is scheduled to be decided on during the 2 p.m. portion of the meeting, language for the two medical marijuana ballot measures has been scheduled to be approved during the 9 a.m. portion of the meeting.

Voters will be faced with two competing marijuana ballot measures in March that would legalize sales of the drug to medical users in unincorporated county areas.

One measure secured its place on the ballot through a community-led signature drive. It would allow medical marijuana dispensaries that were open before Jan. 1 2018 to reopen and relocate.

The other was approved for the ballot by the supervisors. The measure would require a conditional use permit for medical marijuana ballot measures to open, along with slightly stricter setback requirements.

Kern County Counsel drafted official ballot language voters will see in March. Ballot language is typically approved by supervisors.

You can reach Sam Morgen at 661-395-7415. You may also follow him on Twitter @smorgenTBC.

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