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SAFE Issue #8 - Bike Lane Santa Cruz - Sand Hill to Y

Provides full Safety Issue details as PDFThis connecting section of Santa Cruz Ave, between the Sand Hill and the “Y” does not have marked bike lanes nor does it have any on pavement guidance for how cyclists, vehicles, and parked cars are all to co-exist on the roadway. 


As it pertains to Solution Option #8.4, the removal of the short but dangerous 3rd NB lane on Santa Cruz, there are some new videos to help clarify the problem and proposed solution option. 

The most critical area is the east side, as there are 26 driveways, a busy intersection, parked cars, a high rate of speed, high traffic volume, and that dangerous addition of a 3rd traffic lane right before the Y.    Santa Cruz has unusual road conditions: reduced visibility, road curves, a high amount of lane changes by motorists, a very dangerous intersection to negotiate at the “Y”, and an unacceptable high accident occurrence. 



Click on the File link below to see the full Safety Issue and proposed solution options.  Have a suggestion or concern? Enter your Comment below.


In Oakland, 40th Street between Adeline and the MacArthur BART station has a new experiment: a continuous green bike lane painted in the middle of the rightmost travel lane, with bike sharrows painted at intervals. The idea is that cyclists and motorists share the right lane and cars pass on the left (instead of squeezing past cyclists or forcing them toward the sidewalk).
This section of the Alameda is a major commute route for cyclists to and from Stanford and other places and I think it might be worth exploring a similar concept.

Signs as are used on Marsh Rd near Bohannon that state "Bikes May Use Full Lane" is much more clearer and make motorists aware that bikes can share the lane. The other 'sharing the road' are less clear and create angry motorists.

It is unsafe for cars and cyclists to share the right line. A dedicated bike lane is necessary for this stretch of road. There are too many cars speeding ahead in the left lane in order to change lanes over into the right lane so that they may continue on to Santa Cruz Avenue and downtown Menlo Park. Cyclists are often hidden by traffic in the right lane and are therefore susceptible to being hit. The current shared right lane also creates aggressive driving as impatient drivers veer around the cyclists in order to get in front of them before the Y and the need to continue right onto Santa Cruz Avenue. I will not bike on this stretch of road with its current configuration because it is not safe.

We are concerned that if traffic patterns are altered due to a new plan, it could cause increased cut through commuting for all of University Heights by such commuters. An unintended consequence of slowing traffic to the point of more severe congestion and back up at lights that causes people to seek other ways to get through busy intersections. Therefore, please add the additional issue of potential cut through commuters into University Heights.

The concern I am contemplating is reducing lanes from Sand Hill going toward the Y. If, by doing this, there is backup that creates more congestion in the evenings toward Alpine and Junipero Serra and conversely in the AM from the Y to turn left on Sand Hill toward Palo Alto, it could very easily tempt commuters to cut through the University Hits neighborhood and create safety issues for all. 

I am a cyclist who often uses S. Cruz and the Alameda. The sparrows are good but I wonder how many folks actually know what they mean? Also, I have a suggestion for another informational sign which I consider even more important than sharrows. “GIVE CYCLISTS 3 FT” This is the law now and I don’t think many motorists know about it. Atherton has the sign near the corner of Atherton Ave. and the Alameda. I can’t tell you how scary it is to be passed by a fast-moving car or truck with only one or two foot clearance. I also want to put in a pitch for bike lanes heading north at the intersection of S. Cruz and Sand Hill. It is time to get rid of the parking spaces there.     TomG

The San Francisquito Creek presents an outside-the-box-opportunity as a bike lane. It would relieve some of the congestion on Santa Cruz Avenue, but its great value would be as an East-West bike artery. It could span all the way from 280 to the Bay. The bike lane would be in the creek bed and take advantage of the overpasses that are needed in any case for El Camino and other crossing roads. Clearly, this would be safer for bikes than "share the road" and it would not impede cars. There is a precedent in Denver, Colorado, where the city is crossed by several creek/bike lanes that pass under the level of the road grid. A project like this might be possible if it is integrated with flood control construction.

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