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ECR Corridor Study - Menlo Park vs the State of California

From: domainremoved <Peter>
Date: Fri, 20 Feb 2015 09:58:35 -0800

One of the most troubling aspects of last night's meeting was how the "State of Menlo Park" ignored the State of California.

When I asked if the traffic simulations included compliance with the new State law requiring a 3 ft passing clearance between automobiles and bicycles the answer was "we did not consider State laws in our simulations".

The speaker later stated that the objective was to optimize the ECR corridor FOR the residents of Menlo Park and NOT for the people passing through Menlo Park.

And as noted above the two bicycle alternatives ignore the California DOT Highway Design Manual.

And, any changes to ECR, which IS a State Highway, will require a Cooperative agreement:
"Any project within Caltrans right of way that is sponsored by a local entity requires a Cooperative Agreement (Co-op). A Co-op is a legally binding contract that defines the project scope and assigns roles and responsibilities, funding commitments, schedule and any other important arrangements on which parties must agree. An executed Co-op is required before Caltrans can commit funds or resources to assist other entities with the development and construction of any project within Caltrans right of way. Cooperative Agreements should be initiated during the planning phase of project development." There was no mention that such an agreement has been initiated.

Menlo Park may well end up investing a lot of money in a plan that the owner of the property, the State of California, is not willing to support.

Of course if the City of Menlo Park really wants unilateral control of ECR then it could ask the State of California to relinquish its ownership of ECR within the city limits:
"Relinquishment: Options for Ownership
In some cases it may benefit the community to accept ownership of all or a portion of a State highway main street, which is accomplished through the relinquishment process. A relinquishment is a conveyance of all rights, title and interests of a State highway, or portion thereof, to a county or city. The relinquishment of facilities, such as the roadway, sidewalks, or both, allows local agencies to assume the administration, planning, design, construction, maintenance and operation of that facility. Relinquishment options should be initially evaluated in the early planning phase and throughout project development.
The removal of a State highway, either in whole or in part from the State Highway System, requires a relinquishment approved by the California Transportation Commission (CTC). Authority for the CTC to relinquish is given in Streets and Highways Code, Section 73, which outlines different types of relinquishments, including “nonmotorized transportation facilities: pedestrian ways, bike ways and equestrian ways."

Peter Carpenter
Please reply to:
Received on Fri Feb 20 2015 - 09:53:21 PST

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