News

Proposal: three new bike routes, 266 fewer parking spots

Palo Alto plan calls for new traffic circles, raised crosswalks and less parking

A proposal to greatly expand Palo Alto's network of bike boulevards would bring new traffic circles, "sharrow" road markings, speed bumps and raised crosswalks to stretches of Amarillo Avenue, Moreno Avenue, Louis Road, Montrose Avenue, Ross Road and Bryant Street.

It would also, however, eliminate 266 parking spots along the routes, according to an analysis that city planning staff and consultants presented to the Planning and Transportation Commission on Wednesday.

Most of the parking would be corner spots whose removal would improve sight lines for bicyclists at intersections, said Joshuah Mello, the city's chief transportation official. In some cases, they would be replaced with extensions of the curb. Altogether, the 266 spaces represent about 14 percent of the total 1,865 spaces on the three new corridors and Bryant Street, which is already a designated bike boulevard, according to the analysis by staff and its consulting firm, Alta Planning + Design. In most cases, between 20 and 40 percent of the spaces on these blocks are used on a typical weekday, the analysis showed.

The three new bike boulevards under consideration are Amarillo Avenue-Moreno Avenue; Louis Road-Montrose Avenue; and Ross Road from Garland Drive to Louis Road.

The Amarillo bike boulevard (which runs parallel to and just south of Oregon Expressway) would include a new crosswalk at Middlefield Road, a slotted speed hump to slow cars, and signs pointing bicyclists to Moreno, where the boulevard continues. There would also be a traffic circle on Greer Road and a new raised crosswalk near Ohlone Elementary School.

On Ross Road, a new crosswalk and a bike-boulevard sign at Garland Drive would direct bicyclists toward the new boulevard. There would be a new traffic circle with landscaping at Moreno, new speed humps with planters on Clara Drive, Stern Avenue and Allen Court. In addition, there would be landscaped curb extension near Stern and Allen, a design element that slows cars while keeping a level path for bicyclists and fire trucks. The plan also calls for highly visibile crosswalk markings, additional street lighting and speed humps with landscaped planters between Richardson Court and Talisman Drive.

Near its southernmost section, the Ross Road boulevard would connect with the Louis Road-Montrose Road boulevard, which includes highly visible crosswalk markings at Middlefield and Montrose; bike lanes along Louis and signage all along the boulevard, which veers onto East Meadow Circle (where there will be a new traffic circle) and ultimately to Fabian Way.

In addition, the plan calls for enhancing and extending the city's first and best-known bike boulevard along Bryant by installing new wayfinding signs; raised intersections at Homer Avenue and at Channing Avenue to increase the safety of pedestrians; a traffic circle at Kingsley Avenue; and new signs from Embarcadero Road to Oregon Expressway.

The plans have been subject to numerous recent community meetings, with nearly 200 participants. After hearing from the community, staff agreed to keep the bike signs white and without a green background. Hugh Louch, of Alta, said most of the comments were positive, with many people praising the landscape improvements and a few expressing concerns about the loss of parking spaces.

Mello noted that when it comes to installing traffic circles and, in some cases, removing stop signs, the goal is to create a continuous, and safer, flow of traffic.

"Stop signs encourage stopping and accelerating and stopping and accelerating," Mello said.

Traffic circles also greatly minimize potential "conflict points" at intersections and, because everyone is going in the same direction, the conflicts that do occur tend to be side-swipes, rather than the more dangerous head-on or T-bone collisions.

On Wednesday, the commission limited its discussion to the three new bike boulevards (not the enhancements on Bryant) because two commissioners -- Asher Waldfogel and Eric Rosenblum -- live near Bryant and have potential conflicts of interest. Because two other commissioners -- Chair Adrian Fine and Greg Tanaka -- were absent, this left the commission without a quorum for discussion of the Bryant improvements.

Waldfogel ultimately declined to participate in the discussion for the other three boulevards, arguing that the four should be considered as a single network. The City Attorney's Office had earlier this week requested an opinion from the Fair Political Practice Commission (FPPC) about whether living near a bike boulevard constitutes a conflict of interest. Waldfogel said the city should delay its discussion until after it receives the FPPC opinion.

His colleagues, however, were eager to offer their comments on the bike boulevards, noting that the City Council is scheduled to approve the concepts at its Monday, April 18, meeting. The commission was largely supportive of the plan, though Vice Chair Przemek Gardias questioned the need for so many traffic circles and Rosenblum stressed the need for staff and consultants to be as transparent as possible when discussing the loss of parking.

A report from planning staff emphasizes that, overall, there are enough spaces remaining to meet the parking needs, and that "the vast majority of residents and visitors will not recognize a parking impact." A few blocks, however, may get parked up.

According to the analysis, the loss of parking spaces would be acutely felt along three sections of Bryant: near Everett Avenue, between Poe Street and Hawthorne Avenue, and between Channing and Addison avenues.

Other parking pinch-points might result on the west side of Ross between Stern and Allen; the north side of East Meadow, from Fabian Way to Paloma Street; on the south side of Amarillo, from Louis to the Ohlone Elementary driveway; and north side of Amarillo from West Bayshore Road to North Tanland Drive.

The commission generally agreed that the trade-off is worth it. Commissioner Michael Alcheck rejected an argument that he received in a recent email that compared bike signs to "blight" and said he hopes the council will reject that characterization as well.

"A more perfect Palo Alto would have a bike boulevard on every street," Alcheck said.

The plan also won the endorsement of the Palo Alto Bicycle and Pedestrian Commission and of Penny Ellson, a long-time advocate for bike improvements and a leading proponent of the city's Safe Routes to School program.

"We've been waiting for a long time for these bike boulevards to get moving," Ellson said.

Related content:

Plans for new bike boulevards surge ahead in Palo Alto

Comments

55 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 10:17 am

Free parking is not a big deal south of Oregon Expressway. Safety for kids bicycling to school is tremendously more important. I'm glad that the city if finally getting serious about street safety in southern Palo Alto. But we need more safe bicycle routes to the west side of Palo Alto, where both of our high schools are located.


64 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 10:57 am

Removing parking spaces next to intersections also makes the crosswalks tremendously safer for pedestrians. I have been almost hit by cars a few different times when I was in the crosswalk and the car ran a stop sign. One driver semi-apologized by saying she didn't see me in the crosswalk because a car parked next to the crosswalk was blocking her view. Since making car drivers stop at stop signs is apparently impossible, the next best thing we can do is improve the visibility of the crosswalks by not allowing cars to park immediately next to the crosswalk. I applaud the city for taking this action to improve street safety. I hope they extend this policy to all crosswalks in the city, not just the school zones mentioned in this article.


49 people like this
Posted by Palo Altan
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:11 am

The city said the total cost for the bike plan is in excess of $20 million dollars. And that doesn't cover all the costs! What a waste of taxpayer money. The real problem is the bicyclists. They never stop at stop signs, ride 2-3 abreast, are texting and wearing ear buds as they weave along city streets. Spend the money educating bicyclists on bike safety snd fix the potholes.


24 people like this
Posted by Midtown resident
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:24 am

I live on one of the streets impacted by this plan and I am strongly supportive of its various aspects. Our community has long been an innovator in making changes that improve citizens' quality of life. (To cite two examples, I believe Palo Alto was one of the first to establish a recycling program, and the first to establish a bike boulevard.) These changes will continue that tradition, and I look forward to seeing them implemented.


11 people like this
Posted by Citizen
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 15, 2016 at 11:46 am

The proposed roundabout at the corner of N. California Avenue and Bryant Street needs to more carefully studied before it is implemented. The Baptist Church at that corner, runs multiple commercial businesses out of their facility. Mozart Music School, has up to 400 students taking lessons at that location, alone. This has been verified by a conversation I had with Mozart. The school does not have a Conditional Use Permit (CUP) to be operating at the church location. I went to the city and confirmed there is no CUP. In addition, the church houses multiple doctor offices on the second floor of the church. Most don't have a CUP, either. And, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are eating clubs, concerts, dance schools, lectures, other music lessons and more, all operating at the church. There is also a daycare facility on the premises. Parking is an issue at that corner, too. The church only has about 10-12 parking places on their grounds. Teachers park on the street all day. The entire neighborhood is already crowded with parked cars generated from the businesses at the church. The roundabout will take away street parking on the front and side of the church Without a complete investigation of the legality of the church's rental activities and parking issues, how can the city proceed with a roundabout? Parents drop their kids off for the music school, and the kids dart across the street to get to the church. The roundabout will make the corner blind. The corner will also have ugly bright yellow street markings and signage. What a boondoggle.


28 people like this
Posted by Nayeli P.
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:04 pm

Nayeli P. is a registered user.

If you're going to encourage bicycle use, please do something about the rampant bicycle theft in Palo Alto. We really can't afford to have a bicycle stolen once or twice each year. We've had three stolen in the last year alone. The police department doesn't consider these types of theft to be a big deal. Consequently, Palo Alto's bike theft rate is shockingly high.


18 people like this
Posted by Palo Altan
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:20 pm

The corner of Bryant Street and Coleridge is going to be painted with multiple, bright yellow crosswalks. Two of the four crosswalks at that intersection will be painted with 8 or more wide, striped, parallel, yellow lines. There will also be large, neon signage at the 4 corners, along with white triangles also painted on the street. It is an eyesore. Drive by the corner of Coleridge and Cowper Streets, to get a preview of how the city intends to destroy the beauty and ambiance of Coleridge Street, in Old Palo Alto.


Like this comment
Posted by parent
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:20 pm

Nayeli - are you talking about bicycles being stolen from people's homes or bicycles being stolen from street bike racks? Both are serious crimes, of course, but the solutions to these 2 problems are very different.


17 people like this
Posted by Nayeli P.
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:32 pm

Nayeli P. is a registered user.

@ parent: Both. We have had three bicycles stolen over the last year at our apartment. All were well locked (one with a Kryptonite lock). My sister also had several bikes stolen at Stanford as well as one bicycle stolen on University Avenue.

When we call the police, we are simply told to fill out a report (either by downloading it online or going to the station). There aren't any officers actively working to find them. Nothing has ever been done. We've never been updated either.

Sometimes, I wish that there was a way to track bicycles -- like a chip that you insert into pets. This way, we could find out where are bikes have been taken.


36 people like this
Posted by AllYouCanEat
a resident of Mountain View
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:44 pm

Taking away parking access will impact senior citizens and the physically impaired. When is the City of Palo Alto going to realize "not everyone" is capable of riding a bike.

As far as our darling bike riding youth of PA, law enforcement needs to start slapping these kids with traffic violations, ie. running stop signs! Maybe then the parents will take this seriously.


33 people like this
Posted by Waste of Taxpayer Money
a resident of Downtown North
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:54 pm

The community outreach meetings the city has "supposedly" held for the residents has been a farce. The mailed postcards, notifying neighbors about the meetings, have arrived in the mail either on the day of the meeting, the day after the meeting, or not at all. The last community meeting was held two days after the Easter Sunday holiday, when many schools and families were on vacation. The meetings were disorganized, too. There were only about 50 chairs set up for the last meeting. Residents had to stand. The city also had some blank cards for citizens to fill out with their comments. There were not enough cards. People had to tear sheets of paper in half to write their comments. The city didn't want the citizens comments or input. They were just going through the motions of pretending they wanted the input of the attendees. Their minds were made up. The new Transportation Department chief, Joshuah Mello, lost his temper and was rude to the residents. He tried to shut them down. He would turn his back and walk away, or tell people this wasn't the time or place to make comments. When the city flashed on the wall the locations of the proposed roundabouts, the roundabout at the corner of N. California and Bryant Street wasn't even on the list!! The transportation director said he would talk about that roundabout "another time." When is that time? The city did everything it could to confuse, discourage and keep the residents in the dark about the bike project. It was absurd. Most PA citizens are completely unaware of the changes (i.e. street graffiti) about to occur in front of their homes and in their neighborhood.
If you want to give your input about the proposed project, email the city council at city.council@cityofpaloalto.org Also, the city council will vote on the project at next Monday's city council meeting at City Hall. Come and make your voice heard. You can speak for 3 minutes.


25 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 15, 2016 at 12:59 pm

I agree that parking near corners and crosswalks is a bad idea and if not illegal here, it certainly is in some countries.

However there is also a very big problem with residents allowing their foliage to encroach into site lines and across sidewalks. Many signs are obliterated by shrubs and trees as well as many street lights.

Can anything be done about this?


1 person likes this
Posted by You CAN track your stolen bike
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Apr 15, 2016 at 1:01 pm

You CAN track your stolen bike is a registered user.

Nayeli,

Your stolen bike CAN be tracked if it is licensed.
Web Link

The Palo Alto Municipal Code (Section 10.64.010) requires residents to license their bikes before riding on City streets and public property.

A few reasons to license your bike:

Bicycling Identification. If your bike is lost or stolen, the serial number and description can be entered into the statewide system of identification, recovery and notification.

Recovered Bikes Returned to Owners. Bicycles that are licensed have a much greater chance of being returned to you if they are lost or stolen and then recovered.

Identification of Rider. In the event of a traffic accident, licensing can aid in identifying the rider. This is especially helpful in identifying children, who typically carry no form of identification.

Licenses may be applied for at any Palo Alto Fire Station between 4 and 5 p.m., 7 days a week. You must bring your bike. Also, many local bike shops can issue a bicycle license when you purchase a new bicycle. Also, many PAUSD school site PTAs in collaboration with PAPD offer free bike licensing events at the start of each school year.

University Park Station, 301 Alma Street
Rinconada Station, 799 Embarcadero
Mitchell Park Station, 3600 Middlefield Road
Mayfield Station, 2675 Hanover Street
Arastradero Station, 600 Arastradero Road

For further information, contact Fire Administration at (650) 329-2184


37 people like this
Posted by Midtown
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 1:01 pm

I live at the corner of Ross and Moreno. One kid in fifty stop at the stop sign. All the bike paths in the world won't make that intersection safer. How about some enforcement? But no, that does not employ "traffic engineers". Use the 20 million to hire a few bike cops.


7 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 1:07 pm

@Nayeli - I'm curious - how did the thief break your Kryptonite U-lock to steal the bicycle from your home? That's a level of sophistication that you usually don't see from home burglars.

Here is some advice dealing with bicycle theft (forwarded to me from the San Francisco Police): Web Link
Note step 1 - ask a police officer to come to the theft site to write a report. Online reports are for insurance purposes only and are not investigated by the police.

Regarding trackers, I have heard of chips you can buy, but I have no personal experience. Try Google-ing "stolen bike tracker".


8 people like this
Posted by Nayeli P.
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 2:27 pm

Nayeli P. is a registered user.

@ You CAN track your stolen bike: We did have licenses on nearly all of our bikes. I asked one police officer if it helps recover our bike and he half-chuckled and said, "No."

I wonder: Is there anyone in Palo Alto or at Stanford who has had a stolen bicycle returned?

@ parent: It looks like someone used a crow bar or something to break the Kryptonite u-lock via leverage. It happened at night and at our small apartment complex. The other locks were all wire locks -- but they were the "good" (and more expensive) kind. Apparently, it just takes an extra cut with some large wire cutter to steal a bike with even the "good" thick wire locks.

I did call the police, but they told me that they do not go to the scene of the crime for bike thefts. This is why I said that something should change if the city wants to encourage bicycle use. Some bikes are very expensive. We really feel the pinch in the wallet when some vile thief steals a bike.

I'll keep looking for trackers. Of course, it will raise the investment price of the bicycle and doesn't guarantee that it will be retrieved either. Still, I would like to track it down and prosecute the thief.


18 people like this
Posted by Donald
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 4:47 pm

These plans are heavy on roundabouts, and I suspect that once people get used to them they will love them. We have way too many stop signs, which generates a lack of respect for them which carries over to the situations where they are actually needed (i.e. when there is someone else there at the same time). Roundabouts keep people moving and resolve the right-of-way conflicts in an easier way. This results in more efficient operation with less needless stopping and starting by cars and bikes. If you don't like to see people run stop signs, support the removal of superfluous stop signs! A well-designed roundabout is safer for cars, bikes and pedestrians. They do take up a bit more room, but the benefits are worth it.


26 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 15, 2016 at 5:47 pm

Why such an obsession with bikes? They are for leisure, kids, and people who lack cars. Palo Alto already has a great bike infrastructure. This all seems incredibly excessive.

How about adding "yes, you too cyclists" under STOP signs instead.


12 people like this
Posted by Hmmmm
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 15, 2016 at 9:47 pm

Why the obsession with bikes? Maybe because city, county, state and federal transportation policies support and encourage it. Maybe because the corresponding health departments encourage it. Maybe because every environmental group in the country supports it. Maybe because our mayor and city manager are both regular bikers (and don't fit your profile). Maybe because most people under 40 in Palo Alto would rather not drive a car if they don't have to, even if they own one. Take all these together and you get to where we are today. Bike facilities cost far less than car facilities in the long run because bikes are smaller and don't damage the roads. The "obsession" with bikes is healthy and cost-efective. Even non-bicyclists will benefit and should support it.


27 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Apr 16, 2016 at 12:23 am

I'm SO tired of the obsession with bikes and with under-parked buildings. Enough already. I too am tired of expensive "community outreach" programs that never reach the communities/neighborhoods.

Re roundabouts, tonight we drove through the Marsh Road area of Menlo Park at dusk where they have roundabouts at every intersection. They've got some strange depressions in the road on both sides near the roundabouts with raised concrete ridges about 1 foot high on the side of the road that aren't even painted a contrasting color.

We were driving into the sun and it was ridiculously hazardous. Go drive through the Menlo Park avenues and see what you think of the roundabouts there!

The obsession with bikes is finally getting pushback from residents and the business community in Menlo Park where they're trying to take away parking on both sides of Oak Grove, thus hurting the merchants. Fortunately other bike fanatics were defeated in trying to lower the speed limit to 5 miles an hour on Valpraiso.

We bike but I'm really tired of this obsession. Not everyone can ride bikes all the time. Not everyone can carry a groceries on their bikes. Our dogs can't ride bikes or get on the shuttle.

Is our community so ignorant that we need to spend $20,000,000 "educating" people on bike safety in the face of horrendous gridlock and the never-ending cycle on under-parked building?

And how much money are we spending on "community outreach" that never reaches the communities effected? I'm also very tired of the city trying to SNEAK in bike lanes on notoriously unsafe roads like Middlefield without giving decent warning to the residents. Had a concerned neighbor not gone door-to-door handing out flyers which brought out 70 people in protest, they might have succeeded. Fortunately, there were enough outraged people there to point out the errors in the presentation, the expensive and erroneous 3-models and the history of why it made no sense.

How about doing something about the kids wearing earbuds while riding very loud motorized scooters/ skateboards that are driving down the center of busy streets? Where are the concerned parents? Or the city officials so worried about "safety"?




11 people like this
Posted by Jeffrey
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2016 at 8:23 am

The near-constant victim blaming of cyclists in this comment thread is incredibly unfair. It's almost always the cyclist's fault because he/she had earbuds, or rolled through a stop sign, or didn't have a helmet, or didn't wear bright clothing, etc. We never seem to appreciate that the roads we enjoy today were designed when auto-centric planning ideals were rampant across America, and that we are only beginning to adjust toward multi-mode roads which cater to pedestrians, bikers, and drivers alike. Roads are for moving people, and it's ridiculous to demand that road design cater chiefly to drivers/cars simply because "it has been that way" for decades. Rather than blaming cyclists for taking too much road space, consider the possibility that bike lanes aren't wide enough to begin with and don't do a good job accommodating 2-3 classmates biking in parallel. Rather than blaming cyclists for rolling through stop signs, consider that roundabouts are actually statistically much safer than intersections and much more practical for bikes because coming to a full stop and starting again is physically challenging (especially for kids).

The whole reason we are having this conversation about expanding bike-centric planning is because Palo Alto recognizes that well-designed roads inherently facilitate diver-cyclist-pedestrian safety. Well-designed roads naturally enable drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians to co-exist more safety, and will help minimize these rage-inducing finger pointing outbursts blaming bikes or cars. Safer road design is not a waste taxpayer money, and I'm incredibly proud of my city for driving this conversation.


10 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2016 at 8:26 am

"Why the obsession with bikes? Maybe because city, county, state and federal transportation policies support and encourage it. Maybe because the corresponding health departments encourage it. Maybe because every environmental group in the country supports it. Maybe because our mayor and city manager are both regular bikers (and don't fit your profile)."

That is a series of opinions. They do not render my opinion meaningless. You are not right-no-matter-what because of climate-change.
Respect the other point of view and keep government incentivizing (with our tax dollars) out of the picture. I'm not demanding that we abolish bike lanes and add more car lanes in their place (to solve traffic congestion) now am I?

"Bike facilities cost far less than car facilities in the long run because bikes are smaller and don't damage the roads. The "obsession" with bikes is healthy and cost-efective."

This doesn't change the fact that bicycle trips cannot replace car trips. Unnecessary safety "upgrades" where there is high demand for cars and little demand for bikes will worsen traffic. The TMA and their ilk are using backwards logic. But they are so hopelessly well-intentioned that they can never get off their moral high horse and face the music.

This is all a result of a city government that is too big, overpaid, and has nothing to do. They fabricate all sorts of concerns to perpetuate their positions. Their favorite one is "safety". Guess what: you are never safe.

You got to realize that Palo Alto is a bubble and how petty and irrelevant the cars vs. bikes argument really is.

If they cared so much about the quality of life here, they would limit growth in order to preserve Palo Alto as we once knew it. I've begun to accept that limiting growth is impossible, but let's not deliberately accelerate it.



Like this comment
Posted by Spring
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 16, 2016 at 8:27 am

Has anyone looked at the successful Seville model? Bring Manuel Calvo on board! Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by ana
a resident of Downtown North
on Apr 16, 2016 at 8:33 am

I do approve of this measure. I live on Everett. I have great difficulty seeing bikes and even cars coming down Bryant at the intersection. Sometimes I go round several blocks just to avoid the problem specially at certain times (end of day, school's day's end, etc). At times sticking the car's nose out of the intersection to be able to see is even more dangerous for bikes. Now, since for the same reasons it's even difficulty to get out of my driveway I would like the set back for driveways be increased too-cars parked too near the end of the driveway make it impossible to see if any vehicles (bikes included) are coming.


14 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2016 at 8:45 am

Jeffrey you live in fantasy land. Let me explain something to you. A person's most valuable resource is his time.

We drive cars because it saves time and is vital for the efficiency of our economy.

Bicycles should and will always be secondary to cars because they are an earlier, slower and more primitive form of transportation.

We drive cars so we can do our shopping quickly and still have enough daylight to build and produce things, or maybe *gasp* go for a leisure ride on a bicycle.
We drive cars so we can be PROMPT and get to work ON TIME... after all we have to earn our checks so we can pay the high California taxes that are then inefficiently squandered on superfluous "bike safety" road work.

"Physically challenging.....??" I thought you were trumpeting the benefits of exercising and you're actually saying that stopping at stop signs is physically challenging?
I would totally ride a bike if I didn't have to commute down the freeway every day. But being physically challenged is a GOOD think especially in our day and age where the norm is to be out of shape because of all the sitting & staring at screens that we do.
Don't you see that we are really on the same side here.
Make things easier for cars and we'll get out of your way faster so you can enjoy the road all to yourself... instead of watching us brake and brake over pointless speed bumps and get congested behind artificial hindrances.


18 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Crescent Park
on Apr 16, 2016 at 10:07 am

The bike lobby is trying to dictate to Palo Alto residents. They need to be stopped. The city is trying to SNEAK this $20 million dollar plus boondoggle through before its residents realize what is happening. You can't ride a bike to the grocery store, cleaners, drugstore, pick your kids up from school, take kids to soccer practice, or even to work. The city employees are just dreaming up work for themselves to keep themselves employed. PA City Hall is wasting taxpayer money.


6 people like this
Posted by Alan S
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Apr 16, 2016 at 10:37 am

I'm happy to see the bike improvements here. What I feel is still needed is a safe way for kids going to Gunn HS to get across El Camino Ave. I'd like to see a study of getting a bike bridge going across El Camino near E. Meadow/Charleston Rd.

Alan


19 people like this
Posted by Online Name
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Apr 16, 2016 at 10:55 am

Please reread the excellent post above by Waste of Taxpayer Money about the city's farcical "community outreach" efforts.

You know the city's slightly concerned that the community is getting tired of their expensive charades because they're spending yet more money on telephone surveys asking how concerned we are that they're wasting taxpayer money! Their survey call was amusing since the telephone caller had trouble pronouncing Palo Alto.


Like this comment
Posted by Mac Clayton
a resident of Community Center
on Apr 16, 2016 at 11:07 am

Pretty amazing polarization and stereotyping in the comments. No wonder Trump is doing so well. All I might add is that I bet if we added it all up the injuries and negative externalities (emissions, congestion, etc) per bike mile are a lot less than those per car mile. How can that be bad in the long run on an increasingly crowded planet?


14 people like this
Posted by Crowded
a resident of Southgate
on Apr 16, 2016 at 1:01 pm

>How can that be bad in the long run on an increasingly crowded planet?

The way to deal with a crowded planet is to promote a lower birthrate.
And stop promoting the idea that more is better, bigger is better. Using bikes is a band aid, it does not deal with the real problem.


1 person likes this
Posted by Resident
a resident of South of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2016 at 2:01 pm

That's right Mac. I encourage more Trump supporters in Palo Alto/the bay area to speak up.
We are a MUCH healthier society when people are encouraged to speak their minds. The effect Trump has had on the country is incredibly euphoric.


5 people like this
Posted by Jeffrey
a resident of Midtown
on Apr 16, 2016 at 9:03 pm

Resident of S Midtown: Thanks for your comment. I know and understand how important cars are -- I use mine all the time. But it's also important to acknowledge that cars are not universally the fastest or best option. The biggest reason why I biked to Paly growing up was because it was simply much faster than driving. Time is valuable. Many commuters choose to bike because it's the more practical/faster option, not because it's hipster, environmentally-responsible, or good exercise.

Regardless of why people bike, what's wrong with trying to design roads which safely accommodate both cars and bikes? Bikers aren't trying to make driving miserable, we just want safer roads which are designed to reduce driver-biker interference. The reality is that biking is increasing in popularity, and road safety and road rage (for both bikers and drivers) will only going to increase unless we work toward efficiently accommodating both cars and bikes. I completely agree that throwing in rows of speed bumps to slow cars down is a poor way to enhance bike safety, and you should voice this opinion to the city.


16 people like this
Posted by injunction needed
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2016 at 12:01 pm

@Palo Altan
Absolutely right about use of bright yellow laddered crosswalks in residential areas. It has nothing to do with safety. This is not consistent with and actually violates established traffic engineering principles and practices. This City Council is not up to the job- so the residents need to take back their City and obtain a Court injunction against the Planning and Transportation Dept's excessive use of signage and paint in the wanton and reckless destruction of the character
of our residential areas in violation of
accepted practices.



4 people like this
Posted by bikes
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 17, 2016 at 1:42 pm

Not sure why would to discourage bike transportation. Its a net positive. Even if one does not bike they can reap indirect benefits from those that do.


7 people like this
Posted by bp resident
a resident of Barron Park
on Apr 18, 2016 at 11:53 am

I absolutely agree with online name and resident...every last word!!!


6 people like this
Posted by Peyma Oskoui
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Apr 19, 2016 at 3:11 pm

All this is great. Now only if the city would invest in some signs and even enforcement of No-Bikes-on-Alma and No-Bikes-on-Oregon... it is very frustrating that bikers routinely take up one lane on Alma, forcing cars to move over and basically creating a traffic snarl as well as endangering their own lives....Do they know that there are two bike boulevards on the two sides of Alma? one on Bryant, and one on Park? We need some signs to encourage these bikers to move over 1 or 2 blocks and use the bike boulevards and not Alma. (sam problem on Oregon Xpressway, but to a lesser severity.)


2 people like this
Posted by bikes
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Apr 21, 2016 at 8:00 am

Peyma Oskoui,

"Now only if the city would invest in some signs and even enforcement of No-Bikes-on-Alma and No-Bikes-on-Oregon".
While I agree with you that riding a bike on these streets is foolish, it is not illegal. Palo Alto can not create a law that does that. State laws prevent it.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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