Upgrades on Petaluma and Santa Rosa Streets, SMART Path Reopens

Petaluma SMART Path Reopens

SCBC was thrilled to attend the official reopening of the 1.2-mile stretch of SMART path connecting Southpoint Boulevard and Payran Street in Petaluma, which had been closed due to the widening project on Highway 101. SMART also is about to begin construction on a new .2-mile stretch of pavement that will connect Payran south to Lakeville Street, bringing the bike path one step closer to the downtown Petaluma train station.

Mendocino Avenue, Revisited

Following calls from cycling advocates for protected bike lanes at a meeting earlier this month, Santa Rosa has offered revised proposals for a slated reconfiguration of Mendocino Avenue between Courthouse Square and College Avenue.

The city’s alternate proposals include buffered bike lanes on Mendocino, which were not a part of the original plan. The alternatives were presented at a recent meeting of the Downtown Action Organization, an arm of the Santa Rosa Metro Chamber.

The business group put its support behind a proposal that would install buffered bike lanes between parking lanes and travel lanes. City engineers also looked at installing bike lanes between the curb and parking lanes, but this layout raised concern among members of the business group about the future feasibility of installing parklets.

SCBC and other cycling advocates have lobbied for protected bike lanes, with a physical barrier between bike and car lanes, to increase safety and encourage more would-be cyclists to get out on their bikes. City engineers indicated that there is not enough room for protected bike lanes on the corridor, but looked at the possibility of a two-way bike lane or “cycle track” on one side of the street. This proposal was met with concerns in the business group about cars turning off Mendocino.

The proposals will next be shared at a meeting of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Board in November.

What’s Next for D Street

Meanwhile, Petaluma also is considering the possibility of installing bike lanes on D Street as it looks to reconfigure the busy roadway between Petaluma Boulevard and the southern city limits heading toward Point Reyes.

Petaluma will install a “quick build” project this winter to test out different methods of slowing traffic and improving bicycle and pedestrian access on D Street. One proposal under consideration involves eliminating parking on both sides of the street and installing buffered bike lanes in both directions — a proposal that received the most votes during an informal poll at a recent community meeting.

To weigh in on the plans for D Street, click here.