The proposed designs for a new bicycle and pedestrian bridge over U.S. Highway 101 in East Palo Alto will be discussed during a public hearing Wednesday, Nov. 19, at 7:30 p.m. at the City Council Chambers, 2415 University Ave., East Palo Alto.
The East Palo Alto City Council approved a bridge alignment in November 2013. It would start at the intersection of Newell and West Bayshore roads, go southward adjacent to the highway sound wall, cross over the highway and end on the north side of Clarke Avenue, just before the Home Depot driveway.
The project would install new traffic signals at West Bayshore and Newell roads and wider sidewalks and bike lanes on Clarke, according to city documents.
Bicyclists and pedestrians will make 130,000 to 230,000 trips over the bridge annually, according to a city study. The estimate does not account for future housing or employment growth. The project would improve pedestrian and bicycle safety on Clarke up to O'Connor Street, which provides direct access to Ravenswood City School District schools and the San Francisco Bay Trail.
The southern ramp would begin on the northern side of West Bayshore Road at the intersection of Newell Road and would hug the sound wall before crossing the highway. A traffic signal at Newell Road and West Bayshore would improve safety for accessing the bridge. On the north side opposite East Bayshore Road, the bridge would make a reverse "S" curve to end up on Clarke Avenue just before the Home Depot driveway.
The city has received an $8.6 million grant from the state to fund the bridge. Design and environmental work is underway, and construction is expected to begin in August 2015 and continue through August 2016.
The project would also widen the west end of the University Avenue pedestrian and bike bridge by 12 feet to improve safety.