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Cyclist's Death Prompts New Safety Measures

Bike lane for Alpine Road on the table.

After a on Alpine Road and 280, Menlo Park city staffers are scrutinizing the city for ways to make it safer for cyclists, while money is available to fund such initiatives.

Rich Angelo, Menlo Park’s city staff liaison to the Bicycle Commission, pitched a project to regional transportation authorities Thursday afternoon that would close the gap in the bike lane on Alpine Road near the Stanford Golf Course.

“There’s a 250 foot section where the road isn’t wide enough for class 2 bike lanes, so the plan is to widen the road and install new curbing to match the rest of the road,” Angelo said, as he presented the projects to the 12 individuals on the dais.

Class 2 bike lanes are sections of the road that only cyclists are supposed to use.

This project is competing with dozens of others for about $4 million in Measure A and Transportation Development Act funds that will be doled out later this month, after members of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee tour the project sites, which are located all over San Mateo County. The competition is stiff.

“There are an awful lot of projects this year," said Mike Harding, Menlo Park Bicycle Commissioner.

“This might be the highest ratio of requests to actual funds we’ve ever had,” Harding said.

Regional transportation authorities heard 41 project pitches from 18 jurisdictions that total $11 million Thursday night. Menlo Park city staffers were asking for $78,000 to supplement the Alpine Road project and noted that $52,000 would be paid for by the city funds. The project cost would total $130,000 if approved.

Now that members of the City/Council Association of Governments Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee and the San Mateo County Transportation Authority have heard the project proposals, they will visit a portion of them in person to score them on criteria such as whether the projects provide environmental and safety benefits. 

John Hoang, C/CAG Program Manager, said this field trip will make a huge difference when assessing the sites to determine if indeed a project will make the area safer.

“When you are at a site and the cars are passing close by you, you really get a sense for what it feels like for a person who is making that trip," Hoang said.

During that field trip, the transportation authorities will use these scorecards to rate the projects and decide which ones will be funded.

They will reconvene on April 28 to compare scorecards.  The San Mateo County Transportation Authority has the final say and plans to make the final selections on July 7.

You can scrutinize the details of this project  in the .pdf that is attached to this article.  Click on the “View Gallery” link to access it.

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