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Further Study BOTH the Hybrid and Viaduct Alternatives for Street-Track Separations

From: domainremoved <dana>
Date: Tue, 10 Oct 2017 08:29:41 -0700

Menlo Park City Council Members

The choice of how to separate streets and train tracks is a perfect example
of situations where making the best decisions is far more important than
making them quickly. The expected long-term impacts on not only
convenience, safety but also on community aesthetics are huge, and there is
plenty of time to carefully evaluate alternatives and build community
support. If the alternative of dropping the tracks below street-level into
a trench or tunnel is set aside due to a high price tag there appear to be
only two viable alternatives, the hybrid approach of lowering streets and
raising track beds and a viaduct that would simply raise the tracks. Going
forward both deserve equal attention. The biggest drawback of the hybrid
alternative is the need for a ten-foot berm that will visually separate the
east and west sides of Menlo Park with an unattractive barrier. The biggest
drawback of the viaduct is that tracks must be elevated about an additional
fifteen feet. However, the viaduct could have a design and building
materials that creates a structure that is an attractive architectural
element that spans our entire community. It could also provide
opportunities to take advantage of the land underneath, e.g., a shared
bike-pedestrian path between Middle Plaza and Ravenswood, multiple
east-west bike-pedestrian crossings.

I encourage the City Council to thoroughly evaluate both alternatives. This
will likely be your biggest opportunity to demonstrate vision, innovation
and leadership and create a binding and beautiful community asset rather
than a physical and psychological wall. Our community is counting on you.

Best Regards,

Dana Hendrickson
Received on Tue Oct 10 2017 - 08:34:53 PDT

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