News

Cars gone wild: Menlo Park trial street barriers lead to unusual driving

 

By Sandy Brundage | Almanac Staff Writer

After Menlo Park installed barriers to limit turns at the Ravenswood Avenue and Alma Street intersection, some drivers apparently lost it.

Kicking off a six-month trial, the city during the week of June 2 installed a temporary median from the Ravenswood Avenue railroad crossing to the Alma Street crosswalk, along with a curb extension to block left turns from northbound Alma Street onto Ravenswood Avenue. Right turns from Ravenswood to head south on Alma Street are also blocked.

Some drivers appeared to regard the barriers blocking right turns on to southbound Alma Street as a personal challenge, calling for dodging cones, barricades and pedestrians trying to cross the street and driving the wrong way into the northbound lane.

Others treated the at-grade railroad tracks at the intersection as a great spot to pause or change direction.

"A gray minivan heading south on Alma came to a stop at Ravenswood," one witness told the Almanac. "While the driver's intentions could not be known, it was pretty clear that the intent was to turn east (left) on to Ravenswood and that the new structures made that impossible. The minivan sat there for maybe 60 seconds, perhaps waiting for traffic, then quietly turned right onto Ravenswood, started across the Caltrain tracks, turned south and followed the tracks for a bit in between the crossing gates, then turned left again at Ravenswood to head east."

In case this isn't clear:

"Those are really not safe maneuvers to do," said Nikki Nagaya, the city's transportation manager. "It puts everyone at risk, whether you're walking or biking or driving. There's a lot of kids and families using the crosswalks. We just ask for everybody's patience and to keep everybody's safety in mind."

The Menlo Park Police Department was busy during the first week after the barriers went up. Between June 2 and June 10, officers handed out:

• Seven tickets for failing to obey traffic signs.

• Five tickets for failing to yield to pedestrians.

• Four tickets for driving on the wrong side of the road.

• Two tickets for failing to stop at the railroad crossing and/or stopping on the tracks.

• Two tickets for crossing the double yellow lines on the road.

• As well as a few tickets for driving while talking on a cellphone, expired registration and missing license plates.

The extra enforcement attention at the intersection is expected to continue. "It's an expensive ticket and includes points on your license," Ms. Nagaya said. "It's not something we want to see a lot of people getting."

The city is tweaking the barriers to discourage the stunt driving. The work crew extended the barrier blocking off southbound Alma to make right turns from Ravenswood harder, and lengthened the median running along the center of Ravenswood down past Alma Lane to eliminate drivers using that side street as a bypass to the turn restrictions.

The trial changes came about after a 35-year-old woman died on Feb. 23 when a bullet train struck her westbound SUV at the Ravenswood Avenue railroad crossing.

The Ravenswood crossing has seen trains clip cars on the tracks twice before, but the Feb. 23, 2015, crash was the first fatality, according to Caltrain's data. A train clipped the rear of a car in April 2012; both passengers survived. In November 2014 a train knocked the bumper off a car, with no one injured.

Unhappy drivers

Disgruntled drivers are asking why the city decided to block right turns onto southbound Alma Street when that's the most direct route to the public library and gym. The crosswalks are the real problem, some said, as pedestrians can unexpectedly cause traffic to back up on to the railroad tracks, and anyway, the fatal accident in February had nothing to do with that right turn. So why not move the crosswalks, they asked.

Echoing the frustrations of many, former councilman John Boyle in an email to the city wrote: "So to get to the gym parking lot (or library parking or baseball/soccer parking, etc.) I now have to drive all the way around on Laurel to Burgess to Alma and back up toward Ravenswood?"

He said the changes add driving time, frustration and traffic, not to mention confusion for anyone unfamiliar with alternate routes, and that the real issue is the crosswalk on Ravenswood Avenue, "i.e. traffic that is going STRAIGHT, not the traffic turning right. The death on the tracks was truly tragic, but I ask you to reconsider this over-reaction and, in my opinion, ill-conceived 'solution.'"

Ms. Nagaya explained the rationale behind the changes. "We've had five incidents at the Ravenswood crossing in the last 10 years," she said. "Luckily most haven't been fatal. But we have also had 15 vehicle-pedestrian collisions at the Alma and Ravenswood intersection. It's more than just the rail crossing, although that's the primary concern."

When the city evaluated video data from Caltrain as well as its own recordings of the intersection, the staff found that traffic heading eastbound on Ravenswood Avenue led to a lot of near misses as vehicles "fouled the tracks" — i.e. got stuck sitting on the railroad tracks.

"That happens much more frequently in the eastbound direction due to three causes — vehicles turning right on to Alma, the pedestrian crossing at Ravenswood and the pedestrian crossing at Alma," Ms. Nagaya said.

The city opted to test a couple quick solutions, in the form of turn restrictions, while continuing to evaluate whether the crosswalks should be relocated, she said. Moving the crosswalks involves pulling up all the lights that indicate when the crossing is in use, which costs a lot more than the $12,000 spent to date on restricting the intersection, and also entails a lot more public education.

"If we move the crosswalk to Noel, for example, and we don't make provisions to guide pedestrians there as opposed to where they cross today, we'd see people continuing to cross at the current location anyway," the transportation manager said.

Community outreach remains an ongoing effort. Caltrain has been promoting its rail safety campaign during the month of June. The city of Menlo Park is evaluating whether to create web-based surveys to collect community feedback about the trial changes, according to Ms. Nagaya. People can currently pass along comments by contacting the transportation division at (650) 330-6770 or transportation@menlopark.org.

More permanent changes are on the horizon. The city is also studying options for designing a separation between the road and the railroad tracks; the $750,000 study is expected to take at least 18 months.

Comments

15 people like this
Posted by MP Resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 17, 2015 at 9:41 pm

Anybody who pulls that sort of maneuver clearly lacks the judgement to pilot a 2-ton piece of machinery around others, and should have their license taken away until they grow up and get a grip.


18 people like this
Posted by install a stop light already
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 9:18 am

15 pedestrians hit by cars at one intersection is a cry out for a stop light. Why was this not considered instead of these confusing and distracting curbs? Distracted drivers make the intersection more dangerous.

Car drivers all understand how stop lights work. Stop lights allow pedestrians to cross the street in a visible and predictable manner. Banning right-turns-on-red will make the crosswalks even safer. Stop lights may slow down traffic a little, but they will make the intersection much safer. Safety first, right? We don't need more traffic fatalities in this city.


4 people like this
Posted by lessons learned
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Jun 18, 2015 at 11:33 am

lessons learned is a registered user.

Install, you miss the point of the trial. It's to keep people off the tracks. Period. Not to make the intersection any safer for pedestrians, cyclists, or cars, and definitely not to help the traffic flow. Adding a light to that dangerous crosswalk would only increase the likelihood of eastbound traffic getting stuck on the tracks so it's not going to happen. It will be interesting to see if the number of accidents in that crosswalk goes up due to eastbound motorists -- who used to turn right onto Alma --jockeying for position as the two lanes merge into one.


7 people like this
Posted by Downtowner
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:34 pm

Why spend $750,000 for an 18 month study for grade-separation options? How about just hiring an engineering firm which has already done this and move forward?


12 people like this
Posted by Trial...by Fire!
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:34 pm

I understand the idea of having a trial but that intersection is now the scariest, most confusing roadway I've ever seen. All those barriers, signs, cones and curbing are treacherous to navigate for people who know the route and worse for drivers who come upon it and have a split second or two to figure out what they're supposed to do. Hopefully before a train arrives. Congratulations Menlo Park and Caltrain for taking an already dangerous situation and creating havoc. And by the way, trying to block turns at the intersection is NOT keeping traffic from backing up to the tracks during rush hour. How much longer are they waiting? Until someone else gets killed?


9 people like this
Posted by Perplexed
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:53 pm

John Boyle got it right..."an ill -conceived overreaction". None of these people who made this decision use this intersection on a daily basis. It makes no sense. The right turns did not cause this accident, nor did pedestrians or the cross walk location - it was an impatient, distracted driving.


8 people like this
Posted by Mike Keenly
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 12:57 pm

I think the ill-conceived overreaction is by the drivers who don't adjust to these trial changes and obey the traffic laws.


4 people like this
Posted by Evaluate?
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2015 at 1:22 pm

How will this trial be evaluated? It seems there are too many changes happening at once so all will succeed or fail together. How can you tell if the no right turn on Alma is a success or failure?


11 people like this
Posted by Local Dave
a resident of Menlo Park: Sharon Heights
on Jun 18, 2015 at 1:36 pm

I commute through this intersection on Ravenswood every day by bicycle, and I am pleased with the changes. That was one of the most dangerous intersections around before the changes. Now cycling East on Ravenswood I no longer worry about being hit by a careless driver turning on or off of Alma.

The one thing I would change of course is I think Ravenswood should be only 1 lane in each direction the whole way through. That merge from 2 to 1 going Eastbound inspires a lot of bad behavior, and at a place where there is no bike lane at all.


12 people like this
Posted by Senioracit
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 18, 2015 at 1:37 pm

I walk and drive the streets involved in these trial changes each and every day. Here's what I've noticed: lots more traffic on Laurel between Willow and Ravenswood and many more drivers traveling well over the 25 mph speed limit; fewer cars on Alma from Ravenwood to Willow but increased speeding on these; scenes of confusion at the Ravenswood/Alma intersection, with drivers behaving very badly as they try to get some advantage over others; more danger than previously to pedestrians crossing Ravenswood at Alma; and cars continuing to be backed up on the tracks as pedestrians move into the crosswalk.

My conclusion is that the "no right turn on Alma" is creating more problems than solutions and that the right turn there should be reinstated immediately. Also, left turn signals are needed at Laurel and Ravenswood. Finally, the best solution--a way for traffic to avoid crossing the tracks at all--should be fast-tracked.


5 people like this
Posted by Jennifer
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Jun 18, 2015 at 1:58 pm

Have lived in the Willows since '89 and have seen the traffic increase manyfold while driving through the Alma/Ravenswood intersection several times a day; there are real problems. Changing northbound Alma onto Ravenswood into "right turn only" makes sense as an extension of the current "right turn only during busy hours". Disallowing right turns from Ravenswood onto Alma south is nonsensical, and even removes a potential intersection-clearing route for emergency vehicle situations. Perhaps aggressive ticketing of drivers who don't observe the "Keep Clear" areas would help. Bottom line, it's the drivers who don't follow common sense practices that create the problems, and trying to herd them with barriers and cones won't change that.

On another topic: How about a light at Middlefield and Woodland? Residents can't leave or enter the Willows here at times because of the same kinds of discourteous driving arising from too much traffic.


8 people like this
Posted by SaraMP
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 18, 2015 at 2:11 pm

I drive through this intersection frequently, and I use the lighted crosswalk regularly when I walk to the Caltrain station. I'm firmly in favor of eliminating left turns onto/of off Alma from Ravenswood. Past attempts to restrict it during commute hours were fruitless.

But cutting off the right turns at Alma are a mistake. It's routing more traffic through Linfield Oaks, it's confusing, it's jamming up Laurel, it's hard to get to the library and it's making the already hazardous crosswalk at Laurel/Ravenswood even scarier for pedestrians and bicyclists.

Drivers at Laurel/Ravenswood are so focused on trying to get an opening to make a left onto Ravenswood they often fail to notice pedestrians in the crosswalk.


3 people like this
Posted by Edward Syrett
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Jun 18, 2015 at 2:26 pm

Edward Syrett is a registered user.

Traffic lights are clearly the best solution until funds can be found for grade separation between Caltrain and roadways. But when you have several traffic lights in a short stretch of road (El Camino, Laurel and now maybe at Alma), they would have to be synchronized so as to prevent traffic from stopping on the tracks. That might require a fourth traffic light, on the El Camino side of the tracks but right next to them, so that it could turn red while the one for the eastbound direction of Ravenswood at Alma remained green. Any competent traffic engineer could design a system that would coordinate these four lights, but it would be pretty complex. That said, I agree with earlier commenters who observed that all motorists know how to handle traffic lights, whereas the current setup at that intersection is completely bewildering.


4 people like this
Posted by Al N.
a resident of Portola Valley: Ladera
on Jun 18, 2015 at 2:44 pm

Sadly I see nothing in the new plan that will decrease the possibility of a car westbound on Ravenswood getting trapped on the tracks. Perhaps synchronizing the traffic light on EL Camino with the crossing gates(before gates come down have traffic light turn green) might help but nothing in the plan indicates that is under consideration.


1 person likes this
Posted by been there
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 18, 2015 at 2:57 pm

The parking stops and orange cones make it visually impossible to clearly figure out what is going on. Erect fences this are visable and continous.
Fianlly, the police should give the drivers a warnig as they learn how to get to their destinations before issuing tickets. There is little ganed for fining honest drivers who don't know what the changes in the interstion are supposed to mean.
Typical draconian mentality.


10 people like this
Posted by Belle Haven Resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Belle Haven
on Jun 18, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Maybe the safest thing would be to mall that block of Alma, making it off-limits to all traffic. I have always found too much going on at that intersection for safety, both before and since the experiment.


2 people like this
Posted by Marilyn
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Jun 18, 2015 at 6:34 pm

I drove on Ravenswood today. It was no problem not to be able to turn right onto Alma. The railroad crossing is a problem though. The gate comes down when the train stops in Atherton, even though the train is not really approaching. It then rises and a few cars get though. Then it goes down again and the train comes. The signals are probably set up for express trains. I understand this. But, the distance between El Camino and the train tracks is very short with little room for all the cars that have just gone though a green light crossing El Camino or turning from El Camino onto Ravenswood, I really think we need an underground tunnel for cars as some communities north of us have constructed, it did not feel safe. This was at 3:30 p.m. Rush hour would be a lot worse.


5 people like this
Posted by cross walker
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Jun 19, 2015 at 2:13 pm

right turn onto Alma street off of Ravenswood--needs to opened up immediately. this is nothing but a boondoggle for all drivers and pedestrians. as someone said, turning R) onto Alma is NOT the culprit. as some biker said--how much better it is--well, why doesn't he turn his head to see if a car is turning R) before proceeding through an intersection. get his ears off a phone or ipod and see what is happening around him. in any case, bike vs car-there is going to be one loser. obey the laws and learn how to ride a bike.

Open up the R) turn lane immediately to help relieve all the ridiculous congestion this "experiment" has done. the only culprit is the cross walk across Ravenswood. i use this often and it boggles my mind how careless and unaware crosswalkers are when using this "magic" cross walk. why not be polite--if you see a bunch of cars driving east on Ravenswood, wait for that to clear, and then push the button to cross and always look both ways. many drivers don't understand what the yellow lights are for--but many cross walkers don't have any clue there might be some danger brewing ahead.

getting caught on the tracks has NOTHING to do with turning R) onto Alma Street.


1 person likes this
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 19, 2015 at 3:53 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

"getting caught on the tracks has NOTHING to do with turning R) onto Alma Street. "

It also has nothing to do with any of the other things the city is playing with. It has to do with distracted, inattentive drivers who do stupid things to place themselves on the tracks.


2 people like this
Posted by Middlefield and Ravenswood
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 21, 2015 at 4:53 pm

Has anyone looked at this intersection at rush hour. It's a mess for people commuting to Flood Park/Suburban Park. Its really difficult to cross traffic to make the left turn of Middlefield.


4 people like this
Posted by Agree
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 22, 2015 at 11:24 am

Middlefield and Ravenswood is a real problem!


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 22, 2015 at 11:50 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I would hope that the experiment with:
1 - closing off all traffic to Ravenswood from Alma or from Alma to Ravenswood, i.e only east and west traffic on Ravenswood
2 - prohibiting left lane west bound Ravenswood traffic from going straight or turning right at ECR - anything else creates crazy lane changes. Put a solid line between the two west bound lanes starting back at Laurel and do not allow any lane changes from the left most lane after that point.


Like this comment
Posted by lessons learned
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Jun 22, 2015 at 12:17 pm

lessons learned is a registered user.

I saw an eastbound car (with handicapped license plates) slow down to maneuver around the barriers and execute a right turn onto southbound Alma. Talk about causing backups onto the tracks. Can you think of anywhere else in town where right turns are prohbited?

Hey, Peter, how about we come experiment in your neighborhood? Some of us really don't like being guinea pigs in these poorly-conceived trials.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 22, 2015 at 12:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

lessons learned - I use this intersection almost everyday so it is as much in my neighborhood and it is in yours.


Like this comment
Posted by Agree
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 22, 2015 at 1:26 pm

Peter, what do you think about the problem at Middlefield and Ravenswood?


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 22, 2015 at 3:36 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Peter, what do you think about the problem at Middlefield and Ravenswood?"

I think that it is horrible - and it is a direct result of the poorly designed automobile egresses to Menlo-Atherton High School and two lane configurations on Willow and Marsh.

MA's designers simply ignored the impact of their huge traffic pulses on the community.

I note that Santa Clara County has proposed to widen Oregon Expressway - hopefully Menlo Park and Atherton will do the same with Willow and Marsh. Much of the non-MA traffic on Ravenswood is diversion traffic from Willow and Marsh.


2 people like this
Posted by Gridlocked
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 24, 2015 at 3:50 pm

Petition to eliminate the prohibition on right turns onto southbound Alma due to the dangerous conditions created by that probhition.

Web Link


3 people like this
Posted by Jenson
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Jun 25, 2015 at 12:12 am

Peter, what do you think about the problem at Middlefield and Ravenswood

The traffic impact on Willow rd, middlefield, marsh rd and has little to do with M-A high school. Traffic congestion on all those roads is due to Palo Alto, redwood City and Atherton using Menlo Parks streets to get to the freeway. Right hand turns from Palo Alto clog willow rd as early as 2pm and left hand turns from middlefield (Atherton and RC ) to marsh are as bad. You can't blame a high school that opened in 1952 or the engineers for not seeing the increase in automobiles on the roads 60+ years later. [part removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by Gridlocked
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 25, 2015 at 8:27 am

The experiment began AFTER M-A was finished with school for the year. So let's not blame M-A for the problems! School ends at M-A at 3:15 and that traffic dissipates by 3:30.

[part removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 25, 2015 at 12:34 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Jenson states "You are a non resident and comments on improvements or changes to roads or zoning ordinances really don't impact your home life as they do to us who live in Menlo Park. "

Actually I have an office on Middlefield and I do almost all of my local shopping on Santa Cruz.

So deal with facts rather than trying to exclude the views of others with whom you disagree or are unable to counter.

And MA is actually located in, guess where, Atherton.

If MA had also provided access to their parking via the existing stoplight at western Ravenswood and Middlefield the problems created by the single access on eastern Ravenswood would be significantly reduced.


2 people like this
Posted by concerned resident
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 25, 2015 at 2:15 pm

This new traffic pattern appears to be creating more dangerous situations than it prevents. Many residents of Menlo Park are concerned with the negative impact on neighborhood streets and the safety of the pedestrians and bikers around the park now. A petition has been started to express these concerns. Consider signing it if you too wish to voice your opinion. It can be found at: change.org/alma


Like this comment
Posted by Other options?
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Jun 25, 2015 at 3:11 pm

Could anyone kindly direct me to where I can find out more about what options are being considered for this grade crossing area and others?

I was wondering about the commercial(?) property along El Camino at the end of Willow Road. Is it feasible/what would it take to have an underpass at the tracks and extend Willow to El Camino? Just a pipe dream? That would take a lot of the traffic pressure off Ravenswood.


5 people like this
Posted by A better idea
a resident of Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park
on Jun 26, 2015 at 6:05 am

Most of the backup occurs on the stretch of Willow between Middlefield and 101. Connecting El Camino directly to Willow would only exacerbate the problem. Instead, we should widen Ringwood, a parallel street to Willow, so that traffic could be offloaded there.


1 person likes this
Posted by Gridlocked
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 26, 2015 at 10:52 am

In point of fact, Peter, you are a non-resident, and traffic changes in our neighborhood do not affect your home life.

Also a fact: M-A has not been in session since the changes were made. So let's try to focus on actual causes of traffic snarl rather than fabricated ones.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 26, 2015 at 11:49 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"In point of fact, Peter, you are a non-resident, and traffic changes in our neighborhood do not affect your home life."

You are not only wrong but extremely rude. I DO live in the neighborhood, I DO travel this intersection almost daily, I DO have an office on Middlefield in Menlo Park.

Your pathetic attempt to disqualify those who disagree with you is a poor response to the issues.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 26, 2015 at 11:54 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"lso a fact: M-A has not been in session since the changes were made."

Wrong.

", the city during the week of June 2 installed a temporary median from the Ravenswood Avenue railroad crossing to the Alma Street crosswalk,"

Note that MA was in session that week -"June 5 - Graduation Day"


1 person likes this
Posted by Gridlocked
a resident of Menlo Park: Linfield Oaks
on Jun 26, 2015 at 12:19 pm

Wrong again, Peter. As the parent of an M-A student, I can assure you that there were no classes June 1-June 4, only finals, so schedules were erratic, and seniors did not go to school at all except for graduation practice and graduation, which was June 4. The barriers first went up on June 3.

If you truly find time between posting on this forum to go to a Middlfield office, you must have noticed that the campus has been empty this month! Can we stop blaming M-A for traffic?


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jun 26, 2015 at 12:22 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"seniors did not go to school at all except for graduation practice and graduation, which was June 4. The barriers first went up on June 3. "

I am glad that the facts speak for themselves. And I note that graduation involved a lot more people than just the students.


1 person likes this
Posted by Other options?
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Jun 26, 2015 at 4:52 pm

Hi "A better idea," I was thinking that a Willow Road extension/underpass might better address the Ravenswood grade crossing problem. I don't see how that exacerbates the 101/Willow Road backup, since if those cars are going to 101 wouldn't they end up on Willow in any event? I would guess traffic from northbound El Camino going to 101/Marsh wouldn't use Ravenswood but would cross at Oak Grove, Glenwood, or Encinal?

As for the backup from 101 to Middlefield, I am guessing it doesn't make a whole of lot of sense to do anything until the proposed changes are made to the Willow Road ramps. During that construction I expect it to be a huge mess. If there's no improvement with the ramp changes, maybe remove the bulb-outs and have 2 lanes each direction the length of Willow? In the afternoons quite a bit of traffic already uses Ringwood to try to enter Willow at Bay Road. I would guess more people would do this if the Bay Road backup wasn't so awful. Come to think of it, given the many M-A and Laurel students walking on Ringwood and the car situation, I think it would help with safety to widen for sidewalks or pedestrian lanes -- but that is a different topic.


7 people like this
Posted by Richard
a resident of Atherton: other
on Jun 26, 2015 at 9:14 pm

Why have they made it illegal to turn right onto Alma (heading south) from Ravenswood (heading east)? The only effect of that prohibition seems to be to increase the backup when pedestrians are crossing Ravenswood, since cars that would have normally turned south onto Alma can no longer do so.

Also, another impact of these changes has been to significantly increase the traffic on Laurel Avenue, which now resembles a freeway and which now sees many cars turning left onto Laurel from Ravenswood, then making a U-turn and turning right onto Ravenswood so that they can then turn right onto Alma heading North.


4 people like this
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 27, 2015 at 8:03 am

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

a non-working solution in search of a problem. The person killed on the tracks was killed due to inattention. I'm so tired of government doing stupid things just because they think they need to "do something," anything to " fix" a "problem." This intersection isn't a problem to the vast majority of us that go through it every day with no trouble. All it requires is paying attention.


Like this comment
Posted by SteveC
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jun 27, 2015 at 4:14 pm

SteveC is a registered user.

MV: Too simple. Until people realize that trains will can not stop in time, people who get stuck on tracks simply should not be driving. I have never had a problem at this location.


Like this comment
Posted by Menlo Voter
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Jun 27, 2015 at 4:17 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

SteveC:

I agree with you. There are far too many people behind the wheel that shouldn't be.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

Build your own bibimbap in Redwood City
By Elena Kadvany | 2 comments | 1,574 views

Couples: When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 801 views

Trying to enjoy the routines again
By Cheryl Bac | 0 comments | 705 views

 

Don't forget to vote!

Be sure to cast your Readers' Choice ballot online. Voting ends May 28th. Stay tuned for the results in the July 18th issue of The Almanac.

VOTE HERE