Atherton to further study impacts of Marsh Road project

Traffic lanes will be closed during construction

In the hopes of minimizing impacts on neighbors and motorists, Atherton plans to do more traffic studies on the impacts of major repairs on the Atherton Channel drainage culvert along Marsh Road, and to beef up public outreach and hire a project manager.

In January, council members learned the town finally has the permits needed to make the long-anticipated repairs on the section of the drainage culvert that runs along Marsh Road between Middlefield Road and the border with Redwood City, near Bay Road. The U-shaped reinforced concrete culvert will be designed so it could possibly later be covered over, and will have a steel guard rail to deter cars from plunging in.

The channel is now separated from Marsh only by a chain link fence, which has been broken through by errant motorists at least four times since March 2015.

The permits allow work to take place between April 15 and October 15.

Marsh Road, which intersects with U.S. 101 and Bayfront Expressway, is used by many commuters and serves as a major response route for the Menlo Park Fire Protection District and other agencies' emergency vehicles.

The town will have the consultant that designed the project, Biggs Cardosa Associates, do a detailed traffic impact analysis and look at alternative construction methods and schedules that might ease traffic delays.

The consulting firm will come up with a public-outreach program and hold two meetings -- one for the neighbors of the project and one for the region that will be affected by the road closure -- to discuss the impacts of construction and project detours.

The Atherton City Council voted unanimously Feb. 17 to fund the further studies on traffic impacts and to hire a construction manager.

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1 person likes this
Posted by T.Spoon
a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on Feb 23, 2016 at 8:48 am

We lived on Fair Oaks Ave one house away from the Fire Station. We used to play in this ditch in the 1950s and remember it had rock walls and bottom. I think it was the northern boundary of the James Flood Estate and also was bordered by eucalyptus tress that were very tall back then. We also would follow the channel to hwy 101 and go under through the tunnel to play on the salt flats. The fun we had in the good old days.

6 people like this
Posted by Put a lid on it
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Feb 23, 2016 at 9:21 am

With a construction plan now set, please consider the added benefits of covering the culvert now vs. at some later date. Making improvements on this very narrow and frequently traveled section of Marsh road won't be easy, and it will impact traffic, so let's not go through this twice.

Rip off the band-aid and get it over with. If this cannot be done, then at least perform as much preparation as possible (tree trimming, fence improvements, moving utilities, etc.) so that the "cover up" and lane widening can proceed quickly and with minimal traffic impact at a later date.

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Posted by James
a resident of Menlo Park: Menlo Oaks
on Feb 23, 2016 at 10:17 am

I grew up playing in that 'ditch'. When I learned to drive (in those bygone days) there was no fence just a raise concret barrier - can't remember any driving into it. Now w/the increase traffic, it seems a good idea to cover this up now instead of later and make sure the 'barrier' is sufficient for any errant vehicles

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Posted by Robert D.
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Feb 23, 2016 at 10:27 am

Robert D. is a registered user.

If all goes well, we can have a study, to study the study and evaluate the findings that were evaluated. This is an important part of the process and ensures job employment. And you thought it was simply covering a concrete water culvert....

2 people like this
Posted by Mike G
a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on Feb 27, 2016 at 5:12 am

I am surprised the ditch is still uncovered after all these years. Growing up I remember numerous cars ending up in there and a few people too if I recall correctly.

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

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