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.