We are happy to announce that, after several years of planning, design, and community participation, the City has selected Granite Construction Company to begin construction of the first phase of the Neighborhood Traffic Safety and Bicycle Boulevard Project! Construction is underway on Ross Road between Corina Way and Stern Ave.
The construction phase of this seven-mile long road safety project is anticipated to last one year. The project has been broken into 9 segments for construction to minimize impacts to the greatest extent feasible to both neighborhoods and schools. Each segment will take approximately 1.5 - 3 months to complete, with some overlap between the segments. We appreciate your patience during the construction phase, flaggers will be on site to assist motorists and some detours may be necessary at times.
The project includes five raised intersections, three raised crosswalks, 11 traffic circles, and new/refreshed crosswalks throughout. Chicanes (in-street islands), slotted speed humps, curb extensions, medians, and ADA curb ramps at crosswalks will be installed throughout the project area. Many intersections will undergo significant redesign with curb extensions to moderate vehicle speeds and create safer, more sustainable streets.
The existing Ellen Fletcher Bryant Street Bicycle Boulevard will be upgraded with new bicycle boulevard roadway markings, wayfinding signing, two raised intersections, and several traffic circles. A new shared-use path connecting to Ohlone Elementary School will also be constructed as part of the project. These improvements incorporate many suggestions developed through the City’s Safe Routes to Schools Partnership with the school district, parents and students.
Many STOP signs along the bicycle boulevards will be flipped or removed to ease movement by bicycles to the maximum extent feasible. Traffic calming measures will be introduced along the corridors to moderate motor vehicle speeds and limit intrusion of non-local traffic.
Neighborhood Beautification & Environmental Benefits
In-street chicanes with new street trees will be installed along Ross Rd, providing both traffic calming, shade and neighborhood beautification. Landscaping is also included in many of the curb extensions project-wide, in addition to green storm water infrastructure which reduces the amount of urban stormwater pollution that enters the San Francisco Bay.
The project represents a significant step towards Palo Alto’s vision of a system of neighborhood bicycle routes that provide continuous, low-stress on-street bikeways with travel time and safety improvements to support a growing number of commuters choosing to ride a bicycle for transportation. For pedestrians the project adds several crosswalks, improves sightlines at intersections, and creates more safe cycling conditions in street which means fewer bicycles riding on city sidewalks. Neighborhood traffic calming also makes Palo Alto’s residential communities less desirable as short-cuts for regional commuters and enhances the community’s quality of life.
Roadway Markings & Wayfinding
Bicycle roadway markings such as sharrows and bicycle boulevard legends, as well as wayfinding signage, will help define routes and orient cyclists and pedestrians to local institutions and regional destinations. Green paint will be used sparingly to indicate important conflict areas, and increase the visibility of cyclists where needed.
Phase II: Coming in Summer 2018
The second phase of the project is currently in the final design phase, and construction is anticipated for summer 2018. Phase II includes the Bryant St Extension, Maybell Ave, Stanford Ave, Park Blvd, and Wilkie Wy. Phase II will include similar design features and work will be completed by a separate construction contract when approved by City Council.
City Council Staff Report
For more information on the first phase of the Neighborhood Traffic Safety and Bicycle Boulevard Project, please review the City Council staff report available by clicking item 6 on the City Council agenda for June 27: http://www.cityofpaloalto.org/civicax/filebank/documents/58342.