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Manage traffic congestion to reduce travel time on city streets and minimize cut-through traffic on neighborhood streets

From: domainremoved <stevenmachtinger_at_>
Date: Sun, 24 Mar 2019 16:03:30 -0700

Dear City Council,

My family has lived in Menlo Park since 1980 when we bought our first home in Suburban Park. We have lived on the southwest corner of Cambridge & University since 1983. I commute to San Mateo and ride a bicycle on local streets for recreation. My wife and I often walk downtown or over the bike bridge into Palo Alto for exercise or to get a bite. I always walk downtown or to Safeway for groceries. That’s my background for suggestions regarding MP traffic congestion and cut-througn traffic.

1. Grade separation is the single most important thing that can be done to ease ECR traffic. It must include Ravenswood, Oak Grove, and Glenwood. Anything less is stop-gap. Correcting this error will be far more costly in the long run. Yes, it’s an eyesore. So is gridlock on ECR. Also fewer people will die at railroad crossings. Ambulances, fire engines and police cars will be able to respond to emergencies.

2. Don’t permit U-turns for northbound ECR traffic at Cambridge. Obviously the solution here is to permit east-west traffic to cross in both directions at Sand Hill and Alma. This will not increase traffic on Alma; it will simply prevent those cars from taking a dog leg into Menlo Park in order to get to where they want to go in Palo Alto.

3. Complete (1) and (2) before permitting Stanford to build on the former auto dealership properties. For obvious reasons.

4. Don’t permit left turns out of the Safeway parking lot onto Middle. If you have to direct all exiting cars onto ECR to achieve this, so be it. Enter at Middle; exit onto ECR.

5. Widen westbound Sand Hill for traffic entering northbound 280.

6. Don’t allow parking on ECR from Valparaiso to Middle. Remove the center island and add north and southbound lanes.

7. Re-stripe downtown parking. The big X’s on Menlo Avenue and adjoining streets are ludicrous. We’ll gain 20-30% extra parking spots for the cost of paint.

8. Widen Menlo Ave where possible to permit angled parking.

9. As a bike rider I recommend not permitting bicycle riding on ECR. It’s not safe. Create an acceptable north-south bicycle corridor that parallels ECR. How about a path running below the new elevated train track and crossing a widened pedestrian/bike bridge at San Francisquito Creek?

10. Build downtown parking garages.

The last point is probably not in your jurisdiction but relates to MP traffic and concerns the traffic signal at Alpine and Juniperra Serra. Southbound traffic on Alpine often is permitted a left-hand turn but cannot proceed straight. This makes no sense and backs up traffic to the Sand Hill intersection. Also there are two lanes on the southbound side of Alpine. Westbound Juniperra Serra traffic can turn left into the left but not the right lane of Alpine. Why not permit right lane traffic heading south to proceed cautiously through this intersection?


Respectfully submitted,


Steven & Karen Machtinger
901 Cambridge Avenue, MP
(M) 650-796-3813
(3) doctorsneeze_at_(domainremoved)
Received on Sun Mar 24 2019 - 15:59:06 PDT

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