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San Carlos Holly Street/101 Workshop: October 28

HollystreetProject

Lately there have been a whole bunch of things happening on Holly Street. First, it was the on-again off-again Palo Alto Medical Foundation complex, and most recently the announcement that In-N-Out Burger is going to open a restaurant there. Even in absence of both of these developments, the trek on Holly Street between 101 and El Camino is a daunting task on most days — after all, it’s the only access to northbound 101 in the entire city.   And this problem will only get worse when these new businesses get ramped up.

The City of San Carlos has long recognized this problem, and has hosted a number of hearings and workshops to discuss ideas with the public on the best way to alleviate this chronic problem. The next workshop is coming up next week — here’s the scoop:

October 28, 2009
San Carlos Library Community Rooms
Plan Viewing: Begins at 6:30 pm
Presentation and Discussion: Starts at 7:30 pm

Whether you live on Holly Street, or rely on it every day to get to where you need to go, this would be a great opportunity to weigh in on potential plans for this critical artery to San Carlos.   For more information on the workshop, click this link:  Holly Street/101 Workshop.

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San Carlos Hosts Walking Tour of Holly Street/101 Interchange Alternatives

Walk tour

Getting out of a Jam

As we discussed in a previous post, the daily traffic jam that occurs every day on Holly Street is one of the top priorities that the Transportation and Circulation Commission would like to fix in San Carlos. This will be a huge undertaking that will not only change the existing 101 interchange at Holly Street, but will likely have a significant impact on Holly Street itself. In previous meetings, the Commission solicited feedback from the community on possible solutions. A good summary of that discussion is posted on the City’s website: Holly Street/101 Access.

Takin’ it to the Streets

Along the lines of Tom Davids’ popular “Walking Tour” of San Carlos History, tomorrow night (August 11) the Commission will host its own walking tour of the project area.   The tour will start at 5:00 PM at the Laureola Building in Laureola Park, and should finish by 7:00 PM.  Check the website for all of the details.  If you’re concerned at all about what’s going to happen with this critical artery to San Carlos, I’d highly recommend seeing it for yourself on this tour.

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Three Major Road Projects On Tap for San Carlos.

Construction Signs

Improve Traffic Flow

That’s the goal in mind, as the City of San Carlos looks to finalize plans (and funding) for three major road construction projects. All three of these projects are targeted for areas east of El Camino, and are designed to ease the flow of traffic that heads to and from both 101 interchanges that reside within San Carlos.  Note that all three were born out of the traffic impact study that was conducted for the recently suspended Palo Alto Medical Foundation (PAMF) project.

Here’s a quick summary of all three projects:

#1:  The Holly Street Widening Project

This project is probably the most well-known and highly controversial of the three, simply because of the impact to several residents on Holly Street.
Here’s a detailed description of the planned changes to Holly street, from the City of San Carlos Website… >>> Click Here to Read the Full Post
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What should be done with Holly Street?

Holly Street

The City wants your input….

Tackling the chronic traffic problems on Holly Street has been on the City’s agenda for quite some time.  Indeed, if you have to pick out a flaw with how San Carlos was planned over years of growth, access to Highway 101 would be near the top of the list.   Holly Street is the only access to northbound 101 in the entire city.   You either have drive north to Belmont (Ralston), or south to Redwood City (Whipple) for the next available northbound on-ramps.

When the City pushed through the southbound access at Brittan Avenue, this helped alleviate some of the congestion on Holly but it didn’t solve the fact that too many cars are still trying to squeeze through a residential area to get to the freeway.

Ideas, proposals…

The City of San Carlos has been kicking around a number of ideas on how to change the flow of traffic on Holly.   One that you’re likely familiar with is the plan to simply widen Holly Street near the intersection with Industrial Road.  Another idea is to make Holly a one-way street between Industrial and Old County Road (see the diagram above.)    This would require diverting east-bound traffic down East San Carlos Avenue, which I have to believe would face stiff opposition from residents on McCue Avenue — the back yards of the odd-numbered addresses on McCue connect directly to this road as you can see from the map below.


View Larger Map

There are some other very “creative” ideas that are being considered, and Mike Rosenberg’s column in the San Mateo County Times covers them in more detail.  If you’re at all interested in this topic, be sure to click here for his article: 
Close Holly Street to 101 traffic? San Carlos to study options

Here’s another article that was just posted by Michelle Durand in the Daily Journal: San Carlos Soliciting Ideas to Improve Traffic

Public Forum – Tuesday July 21.

Have you got a good idea how to solve this problem?  Input on the proposed plans?  The City of San Carlos wants to know about it, so they’ve invited residents to bring their ideas to the next Transportation and Circulation Commission Meeting, which at 7:00 PM on Tuesday July 21 at the City Hall.

Here’s the press release from the City regarding this meeting:
Public Invited to Holly Street/Hwy 101 Workshop on July 21st
What are your thoughts on the proposed solutions? Post a comment below….

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San Carlos proposes widening Holly Street…

December 23, 2008 Holly Street Widening 6 Comments

holly.png

Widening Holly Street

In what will certainly be a contentious and highly-charged issue, The City of San Carlos today released preliminary details on its proposal to widen Holly Street at Industrial Road.   As it exists today, the stretch of Holly Street leading west from Industrial Road already has 115 feet of widened, 3-lane traffic.   The Holly Street Widening Project calls for that 3-lane configuration to be extended another 205 feet, for a total of 320 feet.   The diagram for impacted areas is at the right –>

While the widening will fit within the 60 foot wide public right-of-way, there will be a direct impact to 9 residential units on this stretch as some landscaping will be lost and sidewalks will need to be re-configured.

Why is the City proposing this?   The Environmental Impact Report that came from the Palo Alto Medical Foundation project recommends widening Holly Street to mitigate gridlock from the increased traffic they’ll be expecting once the facility opens for business.

The City has the details of the project, as well as planned dates for community hearings on their website — here’s the link:  Holly Street Widening Project.    There’s also another picture of the impacted area:

holly-2.jpg

I hate to be pessimistic, but I’m not convinced the benefits of this work will outweigh the inconvenience to the impacted residences.   If you’ve traveled Holly Street during the morning or afternoon commute hours, you’ll know that it’s often completely jammed from El Camino all the way to Industrial Road — sometimes in both directions.  So simply widening another 200+ feet of the road may not make a noticeable difference, especially when the PAMF traffic kicks in.   I think Holly’s traffic woes are much bigger than this.

 What are your thoughts on this proposal?

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Are you ready to step up to the most comprehensive data available about the San Carlos Real Estate market? Then subscribe to the White Oaks Blog for free by clicking here. Be sure to follow the White Oaks Blog on Facebook at https://Facebook.com/WhiteOaksBlog , and on Twitter @WhiteOaksBlog.
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