Tonight: Complete Streets Commission to consider Middle Avenue bike lanes

New bike lanes would nix street parking. The question is: how many spaces?

A map of the planned and potential projects along Middle Avenue in Menlo Park, and what the expected funding source will be. (Map courtesy city of Menlo Park.)

The Menlo Park Complete Streets Commission is scheduled to discuss two potential options for adding bike lanes on Middle Avenue, between Olive Street and San Mateo Drive, at its meeting on Wednesday, April 10.

Both involve the elimination of street parking.

The first option is to eliminate parking on one side of the road and install 5-foot-wide bike lanes with 2-foot-wide buffer zones; the second is to remove parking on both sides of the roadway and install 8-foot-wide bike lanes with 3-foot-wide buffer areas.

Middle Avenue is a key east-west thoroughfare that runs through residential Menlo Park from Olive Street to El Camino Real. Across El Camino Real from the terminus of Middle Avenue, Stanford is planning a large mixed-use development and has dedicated $5 million toward installing a bike and pedestrian crossing of the Caltrain rail line, which would allow people on bike or foot to access Burgess Park and Alma Street far more easily.

The speed limit on Middle Avenue is 30 mph, and the city's bike and "safe routes to school" advocates have expressed a desire for Middle Avenue to have better bike infrastructure for safety reasons.

With the first option, street parking might be removed on either the north side, which would eliminate 67 parking spots, or on the south side, which would eliminate 51. Removing parking on both sides, a third option, would eliminate 118.

The city is already planning to repave and restripe the street. In addition, as part of a separate project, the city has received grant funding to build a "rectangular rapid flashing beacon" crosswalk at the intersection of Middle Avenue and San Mateo Drive.

Over the next few years, the city could install bike lanes all the way from Olive Street to El Camino Real in three phases. According to a timeline laid out in a staff report, the segment from Olive Street to San Mateo Drive would be the first to have bike lanes added, with construction possibly in the summer of 2020.

The other segments would be from San Mateo Drive to University Drive, and from University Drive to El Camino Real, both of which could be lined up for potential construction in 2022, according to the staff report.

The commission is scheduled to discuss the topic at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 10, at the Menlo Park City Council chambers at 701 Laurel St. in the Civic Center.


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Like this comment
Posted by Robert Cronin
a resident of Menlo Park: The Willows
on Apr 11, 2019 at 11:49 pm

Robert Cronin is a registered user.

Been waiting a long time for this. A stop sign at San Mateo Drive would help, too.

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