On February 3 The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency presented its pilot traffic calming plan for San Jose Avenue at a meeting at the Glen Park School. There was a large turnout from Glen Park and College Hill. Unfortunately, the presentation conflicted with the SNA general membership meeting so Sunnyside was under-represented.
Currently, the northbound I-280 off-ramp at San Jose Avenue is two lanes with a posted advisory speed of 35 MPH. The top 85% of cars driving there hit speeds of 57 mph. The northbound San Jose Ave. “cut” between Glen Park and Randall is generally three lanes plus a bike lane with a posted speed limit of 45 mph and an 85th percentile speed of 48 mph.
MTA’s objective is to reduce the 85% speeds on San Jose Ave and the I-280 off-ramp to 35 mph with no significant increase in congestion on the freeway or in the rate or severity of collisions.
The plan is to put the northbound side of San Jose Avenue on a “road diet” by duplicating what was done several years ago on the southbound side. The three northbound lanes will be reduced to two at Glen Park. The third lane will reappear a few hundred feet from Randall Street so as to avoid a backup. The bike lane will be upgraded to a “buffered” lane with a striped painted area that will add more space between cars and bikes.
Phase one of the new street layout will be started in March and will be evaluated by MTA until November. If, at that time there is congestion in the cut Phase two will be implemented removing one of the two exit lanes that funnel traffic onto San Jose Ave. (Old timers will remember that the second exit lane was “temporarily” added after the Loma Prieta earthquake in 1989 while the double deck section of the freeway was rebuilt. Since then, drivers from the Peninsula have habitually entered the city at San Jose, even if they were headed to points further north.)
The plan was well received by residents who attended the meeting and there was little or no opposition.
Questions or comments may be directed to Project Manager Mike Riebe at 701-2467 or Mike.Reibe@sfmta.com.
The Project web site is http://www.sfmta.com/projects-planning/projects/northbound-san-jose-avenue-i-280-off-ramp-road-diet-pilot-project