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Upper Laurel Transportation Concerns

From: domainremoved <Jennifer>
Date: Tue, 12 Jul 2016 13:39:24 -0700

To Whom it May Concern,

I am a Laurel mom of two kids. My older daughter will be in 3rd grade this
year and will be attending Upper Laurel. My son will be in 1st grade and
will be attending Lower Laurel. We live in Vintage Oaks on Alder Place,
right in between the two Laurel campuses. I am extremely concerned and
passionate about keeping ALL kids safe on their ways to and from schools.

I have just had an opportunity to review the Recommendation to City Council
to Approve the Installation of No Stopping Zones in the Willows
Neighborhood (Staff Report Number 16-008-TC)(
http://www.menlopark.org/DocumentCenter/View/10753) . I have also looked at
the MPCSD enrollment maps attached (although dated Oct. 2015, I can't
imagine the trends have changed much). While I appreciate some of the
proactive steps being taken to address the Upper Laurel campus' opening in
October, I have some concerns/questions:

   - *Make bike lanes and/or No Parking during certain hours on Gilbert and
   Menalto*. Given that a great number of Laurel students traveling to the
   new campus will be coming from north of Willow, why is Gilbert Avenue
   becoming a Sharrow rather than having dedicated bike lanes? It appears that
   there is sufficient room on the road for proper bike lanes. If the City
   can't do that, then Gilbert should at least have No Parking during school
   drop off and pick up hours so that kids can safely bike past without having
   to ride in the middle of the road (during busy school commute hours). Is it
   possible to make No Parking on one side of the street during the morning
   and the other side No Parking in the afternoon to reflect school bike
   traffic patterns? This would also be true for Menalto. The Upper Laurel
   campus will be composed of older kids (grades 3-5) and many these children
   are capable of biking with friends without adult supervision. We owe it to
   them to provide a safe route.

   - *Don't forget Gilbert north of Willow and add stop sign at Santa
   Monica and Coleman. *The maps attached to the staff report (Attachments
   A & B) fail to show any areas north of Willow Road. This is problematic.
   Laurel kids traveling from Atherton, Flood Park, Menlo Oaks, Vintage Oaks,
   South of Seminary, the Coleman Apartments and more are not taken into
   consideration with regards to the safe routes. Gilbert Avenue, north of
   Willow must also be treated the same as the areas south of Willow.
   Furthermore, a stop sign on Coleman Avenue at the corner of Santa Monica
   and Coleman must be installed. If Gilbert Avenue is a suggested safe route
   for kids, then they must be able to connect to Gilbert from Coleman.

   - *No parking on Coleman Avenue. *Regarding Coleman Avenue, again,
   assuming that kids will be encouraged to cross Willow at and bike along
   Gilbert, No Parking should be added on the East side of Coleman from
   approximately Riordan (where the apartments end) to Santa Monica. Please
   note that the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors recently passed a
   measure making the County stretch of Coleman Avenue No Parking during
   morning drop off and pick up hours. Signs will be going up in the next few
   months. For the City's section of road, bike lanes, and at a minimum,
   Sharrows should also be put on Coleman. If the City and the District are
   suggesting to kids on bikes to cross Willow at Coleman, then the entire
   stretch of Coleman that falls within the City's jurisdiction should be made
   No Parking. I actually think this should be done anyway so that kids
   traveling to Laurel's Lower campus on Edge Road, and teenagers traveling to
   M-A HS are safe.

   - *Add a Crossing Guard at Willow Road.* If the City is truly committed
   to kids walking and biking to the Upper Campus, a crossing guard should be
   stationed at Willow Road, wherever kids are being encouraged to cross (I'm
   assuming it's Gilbert).

   - *Develop Safe Routes to School Map for Upper Campus. *Finally, I am
   extremely eager to see the Suggested Routes map that will be given to
   parents of Laurel kids. It is critical that this map show those within a 1
   mile radius of school how to best bike and walk. All of the other MPCSD
   schools have a map like this (http://menlopark.schoolwires.net/Page/125)*

My 8 year old daughter is so excited to attend Upper Laurel this Fall. This
summer she has been practicing riding her bike down Gilbert to prepare
herself to commute to school via bicycle. Please do everything you can to
keep my daughter, and all of our children and neighbors' children, safe on
their ways to and from school.

I'll be at the Transportation Commission meeting tomorrow night. I look
forward to seeing many of you there.

Thank you for your consideration,
Jen Wolosin
2 Alder Place, Menlo Park

*Please note that I am also extremely concerned about the Laurel Suggested
Routes to School Map. It shows Coleman Avenue as a suggested walking
route...and it then has a huge disclaimer stating, "No dedicated walking
path available in this section, please watch for vehicle traffic." This is
a problem.

Received on Tue Jul 12 2016 - 13:46:05 PDT

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