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Hazardous Situation- New Ballards and Request

From: domainremoved <Mary>
Date: Thu, 25 Oct 2018 10:28:55 -0700

Hello Kevin,

Thank you for your time yesterday discussing the unsafe bike/car situation
on Olive Street/Santa Cruz while the kids are coming to and leaving
Hillview. I understand that you have just installed the ballards in order
to prevent the parents from dropping their kids off at that location on
Olive St; however, the parked cars may be gone, but the danger to the
bicyclists has now been inadvertently increased. I personally observed and
photographed the bike/pedestrian and car traffic this morning at drop off
time. Attached are the photos and following are my observations. In
addition, City Service Officer, Swarna Sharma, was also present towards the
end of my observation time and concurred with me on several of these points.

   1. Starting at 7:55am, I observed over 70 kids riding their bikes to
   school on Olive Street in order to cross at the Santa Cruz Ave
   intersection. *At least 70% of these kids were riding on the wrong side
   of the street - facing oncoming traffic.* (See photos)
   2. I observed some of these kids crossing Olive St in the middle of the
   block at the point where the ballards start. In other words, they were
   initially riding on the correct side of the street, but when they came to
   the ballards, they crossed over and continued their ride on the wrong side
   of the street. Obviously a dangerous situation, particularly because cars
   turning from Santa Cruz to Olive would not expect a bike to be in the
   middle of the road at that point on Olive St. (See photo of how ballard and
   pole block/detour bikes from using the blacktop.)
   3. For those bicyclists who were riding on the correct side of the
   street, some road to the left of the ballards (sharing the road with the
   cars without adequate clearance) and some road to the right of the
   ballards, i.e. in the gutter or on the blacktop which is meant for the
   pedestrians. (see photos)

   As you can see in the photo, *there is not adequate clearance for both
   the cars and the bicyclist.* *This is another accident waiting to
   happen! *In addition, if as you suggested, the bicyclists ride to the
   right of the ballards, this is also not a safe situation for the
   pedestrians or the bicyclist. (For example, I observed a bicyclist riding
   on the correct side of the street, but when he saw the pedestrian on the
   blacktop to the right of the ballards, he was forced to stay to the left
   side of the ballards and into traffic.)

*In summary, although I appreciate the city's efforts to eliminate the
parked cars in this location, my observations and supporting photos
demonstrate that the recent solution of installing ballards has
inadvertently created a worse hazard and also reinforced the unsafe
behavior of cyclists riding on the wrong side of the street.*

Again, I am asking you and the city to take the following steps:

*Remove the ballards and install a green bike lane or a different solution
that would ensure maximum safety for all bicyclists, pedestrians and
especially the school children.* I realize that a bike lane may take more
time to implement, so in the meantime, I am asking that you provide a
simple, quick and immediate solution that would include the following:

*1. Remove the ballards immediately.*
*2. Make the No Parking signs more visible, as they are currently covered
by the foliage.*
*3. Enlarge/widen the "red" no parking painted strip.*
*4. Have a police officer on hand initially during drop-off times to issue
tickets for violators.*

Thank you again for your time and thoughtful consideration of this very
important situation. As I previously mentioned, I am happy to meet with you
or anyone else to further observe and discuss any options.

Mary Jo McCarthy
650-400-6364 cell

(image/jpeg attachment: Inadequate_clearance.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: bike_to_right.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: bike-ballard-car.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: bikes_wrong_side.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: bikes_wrong_side_2.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: lane_blocked.jpg)

(image/jpeg attachment: pedestrian.jpg)

Received on Thu Oct 25 2018 - 10:27:41 PDT

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