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Urge you to prioritize Safe Routes

From: domainremoved <Elena>
Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2018 08:20:35 -0800

Dear City Council Members,

First, I'd like to thank you for the work you've done in Menlo Park to
improve bicycle access and pedestrian safety. For example, the Oak Grove
Bike Boulevard project is a terrific change and I hope it becomes a
permanent one. I visit Oak Grove businesses two-three times per week in my
car at busy lunch and after work times, yet have not had any increased
difficulty in parking around Oak Grove. This is a super improvement to our
city. Thank you!

Second, I'm writing to encourage you to continue to prioritize bicycle and
pedestrian safety in your 2018 Council Work Plan, specifically as it
relates to Safe School Routes. I have written to you the past about the
dangerous situation we have on Middle Avenue right now and I know you're
aware of the unsafe scenario that hundreds of young riders face on that
street each day. I urge you to take action before we experience a
preventable tragedy.

Finally, I am in support of the following message from Parents for Safe
Routes:

*"On Tuesday night you will be discussing the priorities to be included in
the 2018 Council Work Plan in anticipation of your goal setting meeting to
be held on January 29th. One year ago you included the Willows Neighborhood
Complete Streets Study (which includes the Laurel Safe Routes to School
Study) and the initiation of a Citywide Safe Routes to School Program in
your 2017 goals. Thank you again. Parents for Safe Routes strongly
encourages you to maintain these two priorities at the top of your list.
Given the continued challenges that kids face daily trying to get to school
safely, it is critical that these projects move forward in a timely manner.*


*In addition to the continued focus on the above-mentioned priorities, we
would also like to see the City prioritize the Middlefield Road and
Linfield Drive Crosswalk Improvements. This past summer, the Menlo Park
Fire District generously offered to fund 50% of a much-needed safety
improvement at this crossing location. Rather than pushing for the project
at that time and likely upending other approved projects, Parents for Safe
Routes honored the City's prioritization process and decided to wait until
the appropriate time to lobby for this improvement. That time is now.
Please do not forget the over 70 people who signed a petition to the Fire
Board back in June, the 10 who wrote personal letters to the Fire Chief and
the handful who spoke up at the Fire Board meeting. The Almanac article
about this project is here
https://www.almanacnews.com/news/2017/06/22/menlo-park-fire-district-offers-175k-for-special-crossing-lights
<https://www.almanacnews.com/news/2017/06/22/menlo-park-fire-district-offers-175k-for-special-crossing-lights>
and the presentation we made, including many public comments, to the Fire
Board can be found here
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQP_q_YrkC8&t=1075s.
<https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IQP_q_YrkC8&t=1075s.>*


*We would also encourage you to leave room in your Work Plan for smaller
infrastructure improvements. Whether it's a simple crosswalk or patch of
missing sidewalk, it is critical that enough staff capacity exists to
address relative "low hanging fruit" issues. Perhaps "Increasing Staff
Capacity" should be one of your priorities. It's the little things that can
often have the greatest impact on our quality of life."*


Thank you for your continued work,

Elena Battles
Menlo Park resident + Oak Knoll Elementary parent
Received on Tue Jan 23 2018 - 08:23:55 PST

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