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"Y" Intersection of Santa Cruz/Alameda - Safety

"Y" Intersection Information Section

The "Y" intersection of Santa Cruz Ave & Alameda de las Pulgas is one of the most dangerous intersections in all of county.  The current design supports skewed approaches, not recommended by Federal Highway Administration guidelines.  It is oriented to high speed, something that the community wants to avoid by instead having a lower speed road design where cars naturally drive more slowly and safely.  In this webpage section please explore the various links to gain more information on getting a better design, identifying the safety issues, and read what fellow community members have voiced.

There is a FAQ section to start to answer questions:  If you have a question that is not listed or a concern/idea not included, please leave a "Comment" in the FAQ, or send an email to  

This is an especially important section for our community, our fellow neighbors to be engaged.  County has decided to ignore FHWA and the Berkeley Pedestrian Safety Assessment that points to a safer design and instead base changes on the same basic and dangerous configuration we currently have.  We all use this key segment of the corridor - it needs to have the dangerous design removed and a safe design in place.  

The content here changes and grows over time, based on comments and new information resoures -- It is a Work In Progress.

"Y" Intersection of Santa Cruz & Alameda

Below is a set of interactive comparisons of the 3 Alternatives presented on Jan 30th and the community's  Safety Option #10.5.  The community option 10.5  substatially improves the intersection by simplifing the design, reducing speed, reducing conflict areas, and reducing the size of the intersection by 30+%.  Areas in brown and light brown could be greenery or other taffic calming features - the darker gray areas are basically recovered roadway areas that provide safety buffers by the redesign.

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers

Pros & Cons - Santa Cruz/Alameda Y Intersection

Current dangerous design of the Y
County Alt-C Final design
A community design for the Y - Safer and naturally slower traffic

There is a big difference in keeping the same design that has given us the most dangerous intersection in all of County and insisting on a redesign that has all of the safety issues addressed and with traffic calmiing engineering that provides for a natural way for traffiic to flow slower and saner.  Are there Pros vs Cons?  Explore the conversation on at Santa Cruz/Alameda Y Intersection  - Pros vs Cons

Other Alternatives

In 2017 San Mateo County provided 4 alternatives for the Santa Cruz/Alameda corridor.  Most of those were rejected as they did not address the safety problems and had serious design issues.   In Jan 2020, County provided 3 alternatives.  Alternative A was rejected because it was basically a do nothing alternative and did not address improved safety.   Alternative B was also not selected.  It had unanswered traffic mitigation issues and also lacked support for addressing key safety issues.  


County narrowed it down now to their Alternative C, even though that also has design issues and lacks support for key safety measures.  Hopefully the will consider our Community Safety Option 10.5 that does address the safety issues and is designed to limit speeding.   See the comparison between C and 10.5.

Alt -C -vs- Community 10.5

Click title for more detailed view with pros-cons