REPORT. Location: State Route 1 adjacent to the parking lot for Gray Whale Cove State Beach. Approximately .5 mile south of the Tom Lantos Tunnel at Devil’s Slide.
PROJECT DESCRIPTION: The proposed project involves modifications to the Gray Whale Cove State Beach parking lot off of Highway 1 and the pedestrian crossing from the parking lot across the Highway to the beach, in order to improve pedestrian safety for beach users. The proposed project includes the addition of a pedestrian crosswalk on Highway 1; pedestrian hybrid beacons; widening pavement for the addition of a left turn lane and an acceleration lane; relocation and improvement of the parking lot entrance; as well as installation of associated overhead lighting, overhead signs and roadside signs. The project will include the following components.
Modify parking lot access. Access from Highway 1 to the Gray Whale Cove parking lot will be moved approximately 200 feet south of the current position. To provide this access, additional pavement will be added to widen the northbound shoulder and create 1) a new southbound acceleration lane, 2) a southbound left turn lane, and 3) a paved apron at the parking lot entrance. Grading and excavation will be needed to install these new areas of hardscape. Grading will also take place to resurface and level the existing parking lot.
Highway 1 widening. Highway 1 will be widened up to 21 feet on the east side, and the lanes and shoulders re-striped. An 8 foot wide pedestrian pathway will be installed adjacent to the west side of the highway (on the southbound side) to provide a connection between the proposed crosswalk and the existing access to the beach. The existing shoulder on the west side will be maintained. The northbound shoulder will be widened approximately 8 feet in the area of the crosswalk and parking lot entrance. Grading and excavation will be needed to install these new areas of hardscape. The total amount of additional paved or surfaced area will be approximately 13,500 sq. ft. (0.31 acre).
Crosswalk installation. A pedestrian crosswalk will be installed (striped) on the south side of the relocated parking lot entrance. Both a pedestrian hybrid beacon and overhead lighting will be placed at the crosswalk. An overhead light will extend above the pedestrian hybrid beacon, providing lighting focused on the crosswalk. The beacons and overhead lighting will be placed over both the northbound and southbound traffic lanes. This permanent overhead lighting will be directed towards the highway pavement area. An additional beacon will be installed over the southbound lane to warn motorists of the upcoming crosswalk. It will be located approximately 490 feet north of the crosswalk and consist of a set of flashing beacon lights and a pedestrian crossing sign. Similarly, an additional beacon will be installed over the northbound lane about 250 feet before the crosswalk. Minor excavation will be needed to install foundations for new lighting and signs.
>>>> READ MORE >>>>MND - Gray Whale Cove pedestrian crossing part 1
Gray Whale Cove Stop Light and 21 foot location widening of Highway 1
It seems that the SMC Planning Department and Cal Trans are planning to move forward with a “Negative Declaration” (which would avoid full CEQA environmental impact process) on the Gray Whale Cove Stop Light and 21 foot location widening of Highway 1.
San Mateo Co. Planning Case Number: PLN2018-00482 https://planning.smcgov.org/ceqa-document/mitigated-negative-declaration-gray-whale-cove-pedestrian-crossing
The project of 13,500 square foot of new asphalt will include a reduction in size of the existing parking lot, increasing visitors discovering that the lot is full at peak use. Visitors not finding parking will be stopping traffic twice (in and out). 1000 petitions say an underpass is preferred. A Next Door poll of 575 resulted in 91% in favor of an underpass vs. a stop light. A feasibility study for an alternative / pedestrian underpass has been blocked by our Supervisor.
Highway 89 and 50 have had structural underpasses recently constructed for under $2 million. https://www.sierrabooster.com/latest-news/highway-89-wildlife-crossing-project-groundbreaking https://arc-solutions.org/article/tunnel-fence-near-shingle-springs-to-help-critters-cross-hwy-50-safely/
$732,000 two lane underpass example https://ucnrs.org/helping-wild-things-cross-the-road/ https://abc7news.com/traffic/ca-researchers-keep-animals-people-safe-on-the-highway/1466721/
See article in HMB Review and earlier ND post https://www.hmbreview.com/news/gray-whale-cove-crossing-comes-with-controversy/article_582fa806-a0a8-11e8-8a6e-53324210a5e2.html https://nextdoor.com/news_feed/?post=89244413
The Negative Declaration review period ends 5pm Sept. 30th. The timing is certainly interesting as SM County plans to publish a revised Connect the Coastside report in Q4 2019.