On Thursday afternoon, a group of 10 riders assembled at Cafe Zoe and headed over to Facebook's Preview Party. We travelled down Willow, one of several key routes that can be made safer in order to keep up Facebook's low rate of driving to work.
Challenges we ran into included:
* The bike lane on Willow Rd ends on Okeefe street before Willow widens to two lanes
* The cloverleaf Willow Rd and Highway 101 interchange has 4 locations where bike and vehicle traffic merge across each others' paths (scary)
* The bike lane on Willow Rd from 101 to Bayfront Expressway has glass and debris that can cause flats or cause riders to swerve toward traffic to avoid the obstacles
There are even some more challenges in the section of the Willow route from downtown Menlo Park to our starting point.
Riders included 1 former mayor, 1 current and 1 former bike commissioner, 1 environmental quality commissioner (me), residents of the Willows neighborhood, Silicon Valley Bike Coalition members, Green Ribbon Citizens' Committee members, and folk who contributed to improving bike access in the Menlo Park Downtown Plan. Plus, 5 who RSVP'd with regrets that they couldn't make the ride. There is clearly interest in the community in working with Facebook to help them achieve their goals and make our streets safer.
Facebook is moving into new headquarters on Bayfront Expressway (84) at the base of the Dumbarton bridge. At its new location, Facebook wants to provide only half the number of parking spots as employees. This is a credible and ambitious goal; to do this there will need to be significant improvements to common routes to Facebook.
Facebook Preview Party