Posted 2/4/16: Update on Point San Pedro Road Traffic and Safety Issues

I want to provide area residents with an update on the status of Point San Pedro Road (PSPR) traffic, safety and enforcement issues. Last December, I reported to you that at the October 7 Point San Pedro Road Coalition sponsored meeting with the City and the County Departments of Public Works, on the proposed increases to the roadway speed limit, that City and County staff in response concerns of some of those attending that meeting, agreed to postpone proceeding with the proposed speed increase in order to study and examine some strategies in which the traffic on PSPR could be better managed and made safer for those drivers, bicyclists who share use of the Road.

In December, myself (as Chair of the Coalition’s Roadway Committee) and representatives of the City’s Public Works Department began meeting with a small working group of persons from the San Pedro School. The group included the school’s principal, a member of the San Rafael Board of Education, several school teachers and a neighborhood resident who volunteers at the School. At that meeting the group identified specific PSPR traffic and safety issues that were of concern to them as well as some potential actions the City could begin to take to address those concerns.

The City’s Public Works Director, who attended the meeting, agreed to try some of the proposed solutions.    As a direct result of that meeting, new signs were created and installed and a new radar speed feedback sign was installed.

In January, a second working group, comprised of members of the Coalition’s Roadway Committee, appointed representatives of the Homeowner’s Associations along Point San Pedro Road, the planning director of the Marin Bicycle Coalition, and representatives of the City and County Public Works Departments met to better define neighborhood PSPR traffic and safety concerns and to identify and to discuss some possible short term and long term solutions. Included in the concerns that were identified were: problems merging into PSPR from side streets, lack of visibility at crosswalks, problems making left turns across PSPR, sight distance issues, lack of speed enforcement, and lack of continuous bike lanes.

The HOA working group then discussed strategies to address these concerns. Some of the suggested strategies included installation of raised reflective markers in crosswalks, increasing the number of marked crosswalks, installation of radar feedback signs, implementation of enforcement, refinement and clarification of school zone signs as they pertain to when “children are present”, use of traffic circles, and reduction of traffic lanes in some parts of the PSPR. The group agreed that some of these strategies, for example traffic circles, and road lane reductions would be longer term solutions requiring additional study, financial resources and input from those affected by those changes.

The working group agreed that a strategy of a phased approach would be appropriate. As part of Phase I, the City’s Public Works Director agreed to install and test several portable radar feedback signs (initially in the vicinity of San Pedro School and later possibly at other locations along PSPR) and to install raised reflective dots on some of the Roadway crosswalks (at Knight Drive and at Peacock Drive) to improve crosswalk visibility at night. These improvements have now been completed.

The County’s Public Works Department representative at the meeting supported the testing of these strategies and was agreeable also testing these solutions on the County’s sections of the PSPR pending available resources.

The HOA Working Group agreed to share this information with the their HOA organizations and Roadway Committee with area residents using the Coalition’s website and the Nextdoor social media site. We would welcome your comments regarding these improvements (roadway@sprcoalition.org).

Both the School and the HOA working groups plan to meet again in the near future to review and assess whether the actions by the City have been working and what further strategies should be considered. Both working groups are supportive of postponing the next public meeting regarding PSPR Traffic and Safety issues until they have received feedback from area residents and employees as part of their review and assessment of Phase I strategies.

Staff from both the City and the County have committed to work with the local community on a continued basis to address traffic calming issues along Point San Pedro Road.

I will keep you posted of further developments.

Kevin Hagerty
Chairman, Roadway Committee
Point San Pedro Road Coalition