UPDATE 1-20-2013: Trees are falling left and right as work progresses. Reach 4 from Monroe is officially closed and sealed off.
I couldn’t help but notice there’s something happening at San Tomas Expressway and Cabrillo Avenue in Santa Clara. Could it be Reach 4 of San Tomas Aquino Creek Trail moving ahead?
I’ve looked all over the City of Santa Clara website and elsewhere but found nothing. I wish our city governments would be a little more transparent about what’s happening. I only found a single entry for the Santa Clara Bicycle Committee from June 2012. It says:
Spur Trail Update
“PWD/CE Rajeev updated members about the current status and schedule for planned San Tomas Aquino Creek Spur Trail along the west side of San Tomas Expressway from Cabrillo Avenue to El
Camino Real.” The plan, by the way, is to extend a “bike lane” to Pruneridge Avenue, which is where the city of Santa Clara ends and San Jose begins.
Based on that notation, it would be reasonable to assume that this is what’s happening. However, I wonder exactly what they’re going to do? Will expanding the expressway require removing dozens of trees? Not that I’d be opposed to that, in some respects. Those trees drop tons of debris, enough that I’ve had to request street sweeping by the County of Santa Clara.
I’d really like to see the plan for this stretch of expressway. The last thing we want is something that on the surface is supposed to increase bike traffic but in practice dissuades bike traffic. San Tomas and El Camino is a busy intersection at rush hour and a cyclist has to mix with cars turning right onto El Camino. But even worse would be a walled path all the way to El Camino and the ensuing need to stop for traffic turning right. The loss of lane space would consign cyclists to the walled path.
We have that situation at the San Tomas Aquino bike trail and Cabrillo, and I consider it an accident in the making for bikes as cars exit right onto Cabrillo. Bikes give up the right-of-way here.
If the plan is to widen the shoulder and put up some bike lane signs, that’s fine. Do you know exactly what the “bike lane” will look like? Let me know or provide a link.