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Palo Alto explores new direction for Baylands bike bridge

Council weighs financial constraints and desired enhancements for overpass at Adobe Creek

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When Palo Alto officials set out to build a bike bridge over U.S. Highway 101 five years ago, the plan was to create the city's next landmark -- a structure that would provide yearlong access to the Baylands and make passing motorists take notice and say “Wow!”

But after determining last December that the slender, elegant bridge of their dreams would exceed the city's $13-million budget for the project, the City Council agreed to settle for a more standard and affordable alternative. Just how standard and how affordable? That's the question that council members will debate on Nov. 7, when they get their first look at the preliminary designs for the proposed structure.

Designed by the firm Biggs Cardosa, the structure now proposed for Adobe Creek represents a reset of sorts from the ribbon-like bridge that the council favored last year, a design that came out of a competition that the city launched. While the slender bridge designed by a team led by Moffatt & Nichol didn't win the design contest (the official winner was a more prominent, arch-like structure designed by a team led by HNTB), council members found its understated design to be more in keeping with the Baylands vibe.

In discussing the new plans from Biggs Cardosa (the firm that the council chose last May to replace Moffatt & Nichol), the council will consider a range of enhancements that would make the bridge less basic and more eye-catching. The proposed $13-million structure already includes several such features, including an overlook platform on the eastern approach and separated bikeways on streets leading up to the bridge ramps.

Other proposed enhancements would raise the price of the new bridge, according to a new report from the Public Works Department. They include a plaza at the eastern approach ramp ($420,000), enhanced railings and fencing ($470,000) and enhanced amenities such as benches, signs and drinking fountains ($130,000).

The most expensive and dramatic enhancement on the menu is increasing the width of the bridge from 12 to 16 feet. The wider structure would allow for 12 feet of continuous clear width, thus making it possible to separate bicyclists and pedestrians.

In addition, there are five different alternatives for the steel truss that will support the new bridge. According to Biggs Cardosa renderings, the baseline option (known as a “three-span bowstring truss”) resembles a steel skeleton stretching from the eastern approach to the west, with a large arch in the middle, along the main span. Another option calls for a one-span bowstring truss, which includes the arch but omits the steel supporting structures on either side of the arch.

Yet another alternative omits the arch altogether in favor of a more minimalist feel, with only the sky above the users' heads, while another does the exact opposite and creates a latticed roof over the span. Then there is the most expensive one: an enclosed, three-span truss that resembles a series of gently sloping arches and that would add about $2.9 million to the baseline price tag (the others would add between $710,000 to $2.25 million).

Though the bridge is expected to ultimately cost at least $13 million, the city won't be shouldering the expenses alone. The project has already received a $4 million grant from Santa Clara County, with the money coming from recreation fees contributed by Stanford University. Google has indicated that it would be willing to contribute $1 million toward the project. Palo Alto officials also hope that Stanford University's recent decision to forego a $4.5 million county grant for a new trail network means that the money could now be made available for the Adobe Creek bridge (the county's Board of Supervisors has not yet indicated whether it would redirect these funds to Palo Alto).

The bridge project was also on track last year to receive a $4.65 million grant through the One Bay Area Grant program, though that contribution was one of several that was scuttled by the California Transportation Commission because of a funding shortfall. While city officials still expects to get the state money in the months ahead, as part of the second round of One Bay Area Grant, they also recognized during the May discussion that it's simply too soon to know exactly how much money the city will have on hand to build the new structure.

But the council isn't banking on additional county funds just yet. Chastened by the recent experience with the design competition, Vice Mayor Greg Scharff was one of several council members who in May urged caution in considering enhancements to the bridge. He said he would be concerned about “going to the community and getting people excited about stuff, like we did with the design (competition), and then pulling it back and saying you can't have this beautiful bridge, you can have that bridge.”

“It's a $13 million bridge unless someone gives us more money,” Scharff said in May.

If things go as planned, design work and environmental analysis for the new bridge will progress over the next year and conclude in 2018. Construction would begin in early 2019 and be completed in early spring of 2020, according to the timeline from the Public Works Department.

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27 people like this
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 31, 2016 at 3:14 pm

Let's delay this a few more years so the costs can continue to climb and some of that transit money might be pulled. It's the Palo Alto Way!

32 people like this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 31, 2016 at 3:36 pm

I have never understood why things take so long here. If this were a project that Stanford wanted to do (on campus of course), it would have been done by now. Why does it take 3-4 years of talking/planning and then a couple more years of construction? Just make some decisions and hire a contractor.

33 people like this
Posted by commuter
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 31, 2016 at 3:43 pm

There already is a bridge over Hwy 101 at San Antonio Road. Just convert that to bicycle/pedestrian only and route car traffic to Rengstorff and Oregon, which are only a couple of minutes away for cars, but obviously much farther for bicycles or pedestrians. This problem can be solved this year if the city has the will.

7 people like this
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 31, 2016 at 5:34 pm

Not going to happen. The city doesn't own the overpass.

5 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 31, 2016 at 5:37 pm

"That's the question that council members will debate on Monday night..."

Might wish to clarify that's not tonight, but next Monday November 7, according to what I see on the city government website.

Nov 7 agenda says 7:45-9:00pm, Review and Potential Direction to add Optional Enhancements and Associated Costs for the Adobe Creek/Highway 101 Pedestrian Overcrossing Project, Capital Improvements Program Project PE-11011

The 40 (?) page download of supporting documentation from the city filebank crashed my Mac.

19 people like this
Posted by Marrol
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Oct 31, 2016 at 5:40 pm

This project was misguided from the outset. If it must be done then do so without any "wow" factors or "landmark" distinction. Simple, functional, and at the lowest price possible.

One could argue if this project was even necessary or justifiable. A bike/pedestrian bridge spanning 101 already exists at the east end of Oregon Expressway. It's centrally located, gets the job done, and is already paid for. These millions of dollars could be spent elsewhere.

Critics say this existing bridge isn't functional and/or inconvenient to navigate. I counter with that's a small price to pay to walk your bike a short distance and peddle across at a slower speed. So it takes a cyclist a couple of more minutes, if that. Big deal. The upside is that we could settle the matter instantly and save millions of dollars. Should be a no-brainer, but welcome to Palo Alto and its pertinacity of caving to special interest groups and niche activities.

36 people like this
Posted by commuter
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 31, 2016 at 7:01 pm

I am shocked that some people are telling people to just use the Embarcadero route instead. That bridge is a disgrace. It is too steep and narrow for many people using wheelchairs or towing a child trailer. It is also a 4 mile detour for people living in the Charleston/Meadow area, where many daily commuters along this route live. 4 miles (twice a day) may be minor for someone in a car, but this is a huge burden for someone commuting on foot or bicycle twice a day every day during the winter when the existing tunnel is closed.

I say close at least one lane of San Antonio Road to cars and let bicycles and pedestrians use that until a new bridge is built. That will give the city and Caltrans some encouragement to get something done more quickly than the "years and years" schedule they currently have.

11 people like this
Posted by Bike Commuter
a resident of Ventura
on Oct 31, 2016 at 7:41 pm

As a regular bike commuter I welcome a new way to get to the Baylands from south Palo Alto. The San Antonio bridge is too narrow and dangerous for bikes and the Adobe Creek pedestrian/bike underpass is closed over winter due to flooding.

We love riding bikes to concerts at the Shoreline Ampitheatre. We're well on our way home by the time the everyone else is leaving the parking lots!

How will pedestrians and cyclists access the bridge from West Bayshore? They need to open a bike lane next to Adobe creek between East Meadow and West Bayshore so we don't have to take two left turns across traffic on Fabian and West Bayshore.

1 person likes this
Posted by Gennady Sheyner
Palo Alto Weekly staff writer
on Oct 31, 2016 at 7:53 pm

Gennady Sheyner is a registered user.

@musical. Thanks. You are correct. I clarified the date of the meeting in the story.

9 people like this
Posted by Robert Neff
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 31, 2016 at 11:48 pm

The plans do include a new trail along the water district's Adobe Creek maintenance road to connect from E Meadow to the bridge without having to travel on W. Bayshore.

11 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 1, 2016 at 2:57 am

No need for a Wow factor, it should be invisible to motorists anywhere from the point of view of safety.

I wish bikes would dismount and walk across bridges and under tunnels as it makes much more sense when mixing with the pedestrians.

Get a simple bridge, design and build it swiftly. All this walkability and riding and yet a bridge takes discussion after discussion with no action. Incredible.

7 people like this
Posted by m2grs
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 8:54 am

Bridge over 101 is low priority. We should use the money to build overpass across El Camino Real.

Local traffic is getting worse and worse. Instead of keep talking about it let's do something. Overpass bridges across El Camino Real is one way to reduce traffic jams at stop lights.

We should use our money wisely. Build overpasses along El Camino Real instead of a fancy bridge to (almost) nowhere.

11 people like this
Posted by HUTCH 7.62
a resident of Portola Valley
on Nov 1, 2016 at 9:02 am

How about an underpass at alma and chareston. The bike bridge is a waste of money

8 people like this
Posted by Midtown
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 10:32 am

What percentage of time is the underpass actually flooded as opposed to closed because the city is too lazy to clean and open it? I bet it is less than 5% of the time. We could save millions if they would just do this.

5 people like this
Posted by allen
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 1, 2016 at 10:46 am

Has anyone considered building a wall in the underpass to keep the water off the bike path. Put some pumps in to keep any rain water out and we will have a year round way across (under) 101. Not as nice as an overpass but it is already there and might be upgradable.

16 people like this
Posted by Plane Speaker
a resident of Crescent Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:21 am

-- When Palo Alto officials set out to build a bike bridge over U.S. Highway 101
-- five years ago, the plan was to create the city's next landmark -- a structure
-- that would provide yearlong access to the Baylands ...
-------- and make passing motorists take notice and say “Wow!” ?????????

Wrong mission statement, bad outcome. Still the wrong attitude from what I
can see.

Someone passes the bridge and might say wow once, but the people who use
the bridge use it regularly and the wow is that it exists and is functional. They
could have been saying wow for years already if the City Government was not
so UN-WOW!

A lot of us said basically that at the time. Maybe the City government ought
to be regular people who can actually hear what residents want and are saying?
What happened to this City that it can get so many things wrong?

There are several simple bicycle bridges along 101 and 85 that would look fine
or even great crossing over to the Baylands ... quit making this so complicated.

If Palo Alto really wants to show off, let us be showing off what a great city
and community we have where the City Government listens and responds to
Palo Altans.

35 people like this
Posted by Please build it. We will come.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:24 am

Please build it. We will come. is a registered user.

We do not want or need a "beautiful" bridge. We need a functional, affordable bridge and we needed it years ago! I, along with many others, have worked on funding for this project for more than a decade. Good grief! What does it take to get ANY bike project built at all in south Palo Alto?

Every day this is not built people who bike commute are forced in the winter to high auto volume surface streets. If you bike from south PA, this means you have two choices. You can bike FOUR miles out of your way to the Embarcadero overpass (TWICE daily)--that is EIGHT extra bicycling miles per day. In the winter this also means you are riding those high auto volume routes in the dark and sometimes on slippery wet streets in the rain at night.

Some motorists complain about sharing the road with bikes, but if they won't support a bike/pedestrian bridge, where should these people ride? Streets like Middlefield and San Antonio?--because that is where they end up.

Further, for people who want to walk to the baylands from southern Palo Alto to enjoy this nationally remarkable bay bird refuge, walking via Embarcadero is a ridiculous detour that forces people into cars.

We don't want or need a pretty bridge. We need a functional bike/pedestrian bridge. We needed it twelve years ago. These repeated delays are beginning to seem like deliberate tactics to wear people down.

Please build it. We will come.

2 people like this
Posted by Bad construction planning
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:37 am

So the construction on this bridge will now start when the San Francisquito Creek Bridge Replacement project (which started right after the auxiliary lane project ended) is scheduled to end leading to additional years of traffic/construction nightmare in this section of 101.
Great planning! Thanks for the delays Palo Alto City Council, you've managed to upset both pedestrians/bicyclists and motorists simulateneously.

4 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of College Terrace
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:41 am

I agree, the money would be much better spend to build underpasses on very busy El Camino intersections. Will improve situation for all including bicyclists. Show off is just that.

22 people like this
Posted by PleaseBuildItNow
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 1, 2016 at 11:51 am

to m2grs, HUTCH 7.62
The money for this bridge is from funds that restrict its use. Some of the money is from a Stanford land use settlement. I believe details are in the document.

to Marrol
The Embarcadaro bridge is totally inadequate and will someday need to be replaced itself. Too narrow, too steep, too old.

to Resident
Many (most?) of the bicyclists are commuters, saving gasoline and reducing CO2 emissions. Asking them to walk is unfair/unjustified. Might as well ask the car drivers to push their cars, too.

To Midtown, allen
Making the underpass useable all year round has been an argument for many years. Without a wall, the path gets flooded and covered with slimy slick mud. People will slip and fall (pedestrians as well as bicyclists) and there will be resulting lawsuits, etc. A protecting wall has been proposed, but the Santa Clara Water/Flood district folks nixed that because there would not be enough space remaining for possible flood waters that the upstream channels have been designed to handle (it would become a constriction causing water to back up on the west side of 101).

I agree with "lease build it. We will come." has said.
We need a functional bridge, wide enough to handle pedestrians and cyclists.

1 person likes this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 1, 2016 at 12:08 pm

Firstly, there is a pedestrian tunnel under El Camino near Chipotle and the soccer fields. What would it take to update that tunnel?

Secondly, walking a bike across the bike bridge or under a tunnel would add less than a couple of minutes to most commuters ride. It would make all bike bridges and pedestrian tunnels a lot more safe for pedestrians. Dismount and walk is much safer than riding a bike at speed across the bike bridge.

15 people like this
Posted by barron parker
a resident of Barron Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 12:12 pm

I suggest that everyone who has an interest in this project visit the Permanente Creek Bridge over 101, if they haven't already. This beautiful bicycle/pedestrian overpass was built in 2011-2012. The cost of the bridge was -- are you sitting down? -- about $3M. Yes, that bridge was built for $3M. The entire path, including a very expensive Middlefield underpass, was $9M, and most of the extra $6M was for land acquisition and a huge amount of concrete for the Middlefield Road underpass.

So, look. If Mountain View can build an overpass for $3M (2011 dollars), why is Palo Alto even considering spending $13M (or more) on something comparable?

Palo Alto: get smart and talk to Mountain View and the contractor who built the Permanente Trail extension 6 years ago.

6 people like this
Posted by allen
a resident of Monroe Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 12:52 pm

This reminds me of when my son was in middle school at Jordan. The kids had an assignment to build a bridge which would be tested for strength. All the kids, including my son, were very creative. It was pretty clear his would just fall apart so I told him, if you want to build a bridge, look in the book and see how bridges are built and build one like that. The bridge broke the tester.

If you want to build a bridge that won't work or will be too expensive, create a contest and let people vote. But make sure nobody with an engineering degree can vote.

Or you can look up how to build a bridge. There are lots of ways and they are proven. Then pick one. Here is a pretty nice list Web Link

18 people like this
Posted by Please build it. We will come.
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Nov 1, 2016 at 1:23 pm

Please build it. We will come. is a registered user.

I know so many people who are frustrated with this process. We need the bridge sooner than 2020, please.

Please build it. We will come.

4 people like this
Posted by Jonathan Brown
a resident of Ventura
on Nov 1, 2016 at 1:50 pm

Anything that mitigates the separation between Northeastern Palo Alto neighborhoods and the natural beauty of the bay is a good thing. The overpass at Embarcadero/Oregon is not a substitute because it's way too far away for joggers and pedestrians.
PleaseBuildItNow, Midtown, and Allen, perhaps someone closer to this issue can point out why (for some amount short of $13 million) some sort lock-like system could not suffice to keep the underpass except in the most extreme flood circumstance when the lock could open. Heck, I'd even pay more for the underpass option since it would prevent more visible blight above ground (now that we're not getting a a piece of artwork). It would also be nice to know why a bicycle/pedstrian path could not be (more cheaply) hung off the side of the San Antonio overpass as they've done with the Bay Bridge bike path, perhaps as part of Caltrans next refurbishment of the overpass. Surely someone studied that option(?), but I have not dug up the findings.

4 people like this
Posted by Mark
a resident of Palo Verde School
on Nov 1, 2016 at 1:59 pm

Oh for crying out loud; you want art? Go to a museum.

You want to get a cyclist across the freeway? Build a bridge?

If Palo Alto can't do it, I am sure Burlingame, or Redwood City, or Mountain View powers and other city can help the decision challenged Palo Alto powers figure out how to build a decent looking FUNCTIONAl bridge so the mental health of us little people is secured.

Let's not forget the future value of the money waisted by not building it as originally planned. Every year prices go up on materials and labor.

18 people like this
Posted by just do it
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 2:28 pm

Don't do something fancy and innovative, just get a basic overpass that walk/bike friendly so it'll be easier for commuters. DO IT ALREADY!

Like this comment
Posted by member
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 2:39 pm

Agree that the underpass seems better than a new bridge. I MUCH prefer the underpass to any of the bridges and it is fun to go under the highway and see the cranes and even fish, and way less scary. If some kind of sensor could be put in to shut down the underpass (automatically close those gates) when the water gets high (or have one of the rangers take a look!) there would probably be three days per year total the underpass is unusable. I hate it when they close down the underpass in the fall and usually there is no water to worry about for weeks on end. Save the money for the schools or something important. But I guess they already spent so much $$ and there is that psychology of once you start down a path it is too hard to make a U-turn. Which is wrong! Anyway I said the same thing two years ago. WHy a bridge!?

8 people like this
Posted by Ego trip
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Nov 1, 2016 at 3:10 pm

The weekly fails to mention who is primarily responsible for this fiasco-- Karen Holman. She is the one pushing for the " wow" factor and the doomed architectural competition. We need a bridge , so just get one built. Just because one councilmember is on an ego trip means we have no bridge.

3 people like this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 3:12 pm

As much as I enjoy using the underpass when it is available, I am certain that keeping it open year round is not an option. The SCV Water District would absolutely object to reducing the flows that that channel can carry. Any addition of a separate (dry) space under there would probably lead to a greater flood risk upstream on both Adobe and Barron Creeks. I'm sure none of us wants that, and the Water District would not allow it. Also, leaving the fencing in place during storms would cause the same thing when debris gets caught on the poles and clogs the channel. I'm sure someone will reply that it would be easier to enlarge the underpass than build a bridge, but that is not so. Just look at the mess that the San Francisquito Creek underpass enlargement is causing.

23 people like this
Posted by commuter
a resident of South of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 4:10 pm

I've lived in southern Palo Alto for 30 years. I can remember the city studying a bicycle bridge at that location at least 3 different times. Yes, some kind of year round underpass has been studied multiple times and rejected each time because of the water flow and flood control issue.

What is sad is that we got so close to having a bridge built this time. Now the project is bungled and we have to wait 4 more years to have a safe bike route in southern Palo Alto. In the meantime, our family will probably bicycle down Middlefield Road and cross the highway at the Permanente Creek bridge, but this can be dangerous because there are a lot of speeding cars on Middlefield and the bike lanes are missing in some areas.

I don't know why this mismanagement wasn't a campaign issue by a newcomer wanting to throw the bums out of office.

12 people like this
Posted by MP Resident
a resident of Menlo Park
on Nov 1, 2016 at 4:55 pm

This is basic commuter infrastructure. Build a solid, functional, standard bridge.

If you want to do something 'iconic', attach pretty lights.

Now just build the damn thing, preferably yesterday.

14 people like this
Posted by bp, no not that BP
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 5:04 pm

Stop discussing and just build a bridge that won't fall down or rust(like the eastern portion of the bay bridge). I believe the GG bridge took less time to build than what should be a simple overpass. While all this has been going on my grandchildren have grown up and gone away to college. I'm too old to ride my bike and will soon be soon too old to walk across the darn thing.

7 people like this
Posted by Deja Vu All Over Again
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 1, 2016 at 9:08 pm

Karen Holman's Folly. Same story, FIVE years ago!:
Web Link

10 people like this
Posted by Eric
a resident of Downtown North
on Nov 1, 2016 at 9:11 pm

This is insane, really. 5 years wasted by some real knuckleheads in city hall who seem determined as ever to leave their mark on, drum roll... a bike bridge over 101. Really? All that is required is something accessible to all users and safe. I completely agree with barron parker, look at Mtn. View's solution. It completely fits the bill at a fraction of the cost. What on earth are the people in PA city hall doing?

14 people like this
Posted by Matt Austern
a resident of Greendell/Walnut Grove
on Nov 1, 2016 at 9:16 pm

I'm disappointed that the city seems to have given up on the idea of finishing the project this decade. Every additional winter that the bridge remains unbuilt and that the underpass is closed, that's another 4-6 months when there's no safe crossing.

I'm not seeing any sense of urgency about this from this city.

Like this comment
Posted by to @ bad construction planning
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Nov 2, 2016 at 9:58 am

What worries me is we hear CalTrans is determined to install a paying lane on 101 and this will undoubtedly lead to more years of disruption on 101 locally. Something about re-doing the commuter lane to accept solo drivers with transponders, and also another stretch of 101 will have an additional lane that is pay only (down to Morgan Hill?!)
Anyway, it adds up to insane constant construction on 101 - uncoordinated by public authorities - while I realize this isn't Palo Alto city staff's domain, they should take an interest and advocate for streamlining these projects.
In meantime, I do support having a bridge, it doesn't need to be extraordinary but shouldn't be the ugly basic "railway bridge" from the 1920's design that I saw on the cover of The Daily Post newspaper recently. There are examples of reasonable, functional, and reasonably attractive bike bridges and I would appreciate having a good one to get to the wonderful Baylands. I don't have a vehicle that can transport bikes, not all of us own massive SUVs.

1 person likes this
Posted by Midtown
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 2, 2016 at 10:12 am

12 to 15 million to build a bike bridge when we apparently don't5 have tuhe money to maintain our bumpy surface streets and potholes???
How about first things first?

Like this comment
Posted by Paly Grad
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Dec 24, 2016 at 7:28 pm

$13 million is a lot of money to spend on a bicycle bridge!

The 2,460 feet- long Belmont Pedestrian/Bike Bridge over U.S. 101 at Ralston Avenue opened in November 2011. The total cost of the construction was $7.9 million, with $0.6 million coming from Measure A, and the remainder mostly from federal funds.

Here is an article about that award winning bridge: Web Link

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Posted by Plane Speaker
a resident of Crescent Park
on Dec 27, 2016 at 7:32 pm

When I read this article before ... I don't remember this picture here?

New bridge concept: Web Link

I actually like this and think it looks nice and affordable. It is not ostentatious,
it looks like all the other bike bridges in the area. But it is way down in the
South end of town

It does appear like spanning the whole freeway, as it does, might not be
structurally the greatest idea. Maybe a pier in the middle of the freeway
might add stability. Most of the other bridges in the area resonate and
vibrate disconcertingly when a number of people cross them at the same
time and set up a feeling of walking or riding on rubber.

Amazing how many years it takes to get a realistic proposal, but this
seems good.

2 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Mar 17, 2017 at 6:48 am

We have hiking group that used to go on the Stevens Creek Trail but had to stop because it is filled with bicycles going top speed to end up in the Microsoft area of Shoreline/ Mountain View. There are all types of bridges and underpasses here to accommodate each obstruction - bridge over Alma, tunnel under another highway, etc. Take a hike here starting west of El Camino and you will see every variant possible - most of which are functional and low cost. This is a well used and popular way to get to work for a huge number of people working in the Shoreline Complexes who live west of El Camino.
So why is it so hard for Palo Alto to clean up the Adobe underpass and put in another over freeway bike/walk bridge? It can parallel the San Antonio overpass, possibly use part of that infrastructure since there is already a right of way for Caltrans in that area.

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