Our community, each of us, needs to take action to solve a long standing safety issue at the Palo Alto Way crosswalk on Santa Cruz Ave. County has done virtually nothing and it seems they are happy to continue that mindset for a few more years. Our community can make it clear to County management that this is not acceptable and that safety action is required now. Please read the following and use the email link at the bottom to add your voice to this critically needed safety action.
Two weeks ago, on the Palo Alto Way crosswalk across Santa Cruz Ave, we had a very close call when students were crossing in the morning. There are absolutely no effective safety provisions to notify motorists that pedestrians are using the crosswalk. No way for motorists to be aware of the need to slow down and stop. No safety buffer created when cars do eventually stop, as they currently stop right at and even in the crosswalk! Traffic in one lane of Santa Cruz, often obscures visibility of pedestrians crossing other lanes, this stop limit line buffer is absolutely needed.
Every engineering effort in the last 11 years has recommended to the County that a pedestrian activated light be installed for this crosswalk. Menlo Park, along this same Santa Cruz Ave, has already installed a half dozen of these pedestrian activated traffic lights as you travel to downtown. County has been dragging their feet on safety for this crosswalk ever since Amy Bijan
was hit and dragged to her death. There is absolutely no reason, no excuse, for this not to be corrected back then. These lights should have been installed on the engineering recommendation 11 years ago and now years upon years later, after several more engineering recommendations, there is still no reason to delay. This needs to happen now - immediately! It is inexpensive and critically needed.
Over a year ago, we completed a petition to County to install this pedestrian activated traffic light — we contacted the entire area, over 200 and 98% supported the petition’s request for county to immediately address the safety of this crosswalk. Safety can be greatly improved and lives saved if County will:
1) install a pedestrian activated traffic light system;
2) create a crosswalk safety buffer by using stop-limit (aka shark tooth stop lines 20’ to 30’ before the crosswalk;
3) Install a crosswalk bollard in the middle of the crosswalk announcing the crosswalk;
4) Create ADA curb for crosswalk;
5) insure proper street lighting on both sides of the crosswalk to insure the crosswalk is well lighted at night.
Here are some resources:
website is a good source on safety issues and various points of interest and news in our area.
You can use and share this link ( Please email County Administration) for emailing County Administrators with requests to immediately install the Pedestrian Activated Crosswalk lighting system. The community can make this happen, especially if our voice is heard through individual emails being sent. As stated before, every single traffic engineering study in the last 11 years has recommended safety improvements at the Palo Alto Way crosswalk, and a pedestrian activated traffic light system has been a key element. This should not wait. Every future design of the road way that County is considering for 2 or 3 or 4 years down the road, is not affected by the installation of this crosswalk traffic light happening now. We needed safety before Amy's life was taken. Now is the next best available time to get this done!