Councilmember III

Thank you for your recent email to Councilmember Lightner about her support of bicycle commuting in the City of San Diego. As her assistant to this issue, she asked me to respond and give you some of her thoughts on your inquiry. Sherri is very supportive of bicycle commuting, and she has been and will continue to work to improve opportunities for bicycle commuting in her communities. She understands the difference between recreational riding and commuting as you mentioned in your correspondence and will continue to work to improve access for all bicyclists. Some of the things Sherri’s done to support bicycle commuting include the following:

· Sherri organized a recent stakeholder group meeting with the University City Planning Group, San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, Friends of Rose Canyon, SANDAG, City Engineering Staff and others regarding the section of the Coastal Rail Trail bicycle path, between Sorrento Valley and the Rose Canyon Bike Path, to move that project forward.

· Sherri supports the construction of a bike path connection at SR-56 & Sorrento Valley Road under I-5, as well as completing bike lanes on Carmel Valley Road to Sorrento Valley Road. This is currently part of the North Coast I-5 Widening project. We’re working with community members from Carmel Valley to try to get this project separated-out so it can be completed on a faster timeline than the I-5 widening.

· Sherri continues to push for improvements to the I-5/Genesee interchange that will add bicycle lanes in both directions. As currently designed (the EIR was released within the last several months) the new Genesee overcrossing includes bike lanes. Here are some excerpts from the EIR:

“The Project would be designed to accommodate pedestrian and bicycle traffic, as well as vehicular traffic, within the Project corridor. The proposed overcrossing structure would include a Class II bike lane that is 1.8 m (6 ft) wide in each direction. The City of San Diego Bicycle Master Plan also identifies an existing Class III bike route along the shoulders of I-5 connecting Genesee Avenue and Sorrento Valley Road. The proposed interchange improvements would maintain this Class III bike route. Accordingly, the proposed improvements would include a bicycle and pedestrian link between the eastern and western sides of I-5 and would be consistent with planned multi-modal transportation facilities and goals in the Project area.”

“Both the Genesee Avenue and Voigt Drive overcrossings would be improved for bicyclist and pedestrian access and operations. The Genesee Avenue interchange would include a sidewalk that is 2 m (6.6 ft) wide on the north side of Genesee Avenue, bike lanes in both directions, striped/signalized pedestrian crossings and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliant pedestrian ramps at each intersection. The Voigt Drive overcrossing would include sidewalks and bike lanes. Existing free-right turns at the Genesee Avenue interchange would be removed to avoid conflicts with pedestrian and bicycle traffic.”

The full EIR for this project is available at http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist11/Env_docs/I-5_Genesee.pdf (PDF)

· Sherri supports connectors at El Camino Real to the SR-56 bike path. This is a project in progress, but that will take time to complete.

· Sherri supports fixing the Black Mountain Road 56 bike intersection. Again, this is something that is in progress. The Rancho Penasquitos Planning Board approved a concept earlier this year, and the City is currently working with SANDAG and the Community for funding and implementation. However, this will take time because of some differences in the Community’s and Caltrans’ visions for this intersection. (Caltrans has a large role because of their land ownership at the intersection.)

· Sherri constantly works to get cracks and potholes in roadways fixed quickly to improve riding surface and safety for bicyclists.

· Sherri succeeded in pushing the City to work with UCSD to secure grant funding for their Bicycle Master Plan. We’ll continue to support UCSD in their efforts at expanding their bike commuter programs.

· Sherri is also incorporating some of the issues above into requests for Transnet funding through SANDAG that the City is applying for.

If you have any questions about the projects above, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Also, if you have any thoughts about other improvements or issues in District One that you would like Sherri to know about, please don’t hesitate to pass them along. Lastly, as Chair of the Land Use and Housing Committee (LU&H) Sherri has the opportunity to have public discussions about land use and transportation issues at the committee. If there are any policies or issues that you would like Sherri to consider adding to the agenda, please let me know. I have cc’d Nika Bukalova, who is Sherri’s consultant for the committee.

Thank you very much for your email.

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