Vancouver can’t afford to tend streets

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Aug 122013
 

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Council receives audit on shortfall for building, maintaining its largest asset

Source: Stephanie Rice
Columbian staff writer
www.columbian.com

If you’re unhappy with the city’s improvements on Northeast 137th/138th Avenue from Northeast 28th to 49th streets, take heart: The city doesn’t have any money to continue the project from 49th Street north to Fourth Plain Road.

The city also doesn’t have money for four other high-priority capital improvement projects:

• Northeast 18th Street from Four Seasons Lane to Northeast 137th Avenue.

• Southeast First Street from Southeast 164th to 192nd avenues.

• Northeast 18th Street from Northeast 107th to 97th/98th avenues.

• Jefferson Street/Kauffman Avenue between Evergreen and W. Fourth Plain boulevards.

All together, the five projects would cost $46.1 million.

The Vancouver City Council was presented with a grim confirmation Monday of what it knew, that it is millions of dollars short on its goals of reconstructing streets, including ones that were built to a rural standard (such as Southeast First Street) and can’t handle urban traffic.

The councilors didn’t make any policy decisions Monday. They are scheduled to set a policy by mid-to-late November on how to best manage long-term transportation needs, including how those needs should be financed.

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City of Carlsbad, CA Discussing Pedestrian/Cyclist Bridge at Railroad Xing

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Apr 122013
 

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Source: Phil Diehl, UT San Diego

Downtown Carlsbad residents could get a shortcut to the beach in a few more years. And to school. Even to the Village.

City planners have asked for a $100,000 grant to study the feasibility of installing a railroad crossing for pedestrians and cyclists at Chestnut Avenue.

The proposed crossing would serve primarily residents of the Barrio, one of Carlsbad’s oldest neighborhoods, which is cut off from the nearby beach by the railroad tracks running north and south.

It also would give beach-area residents a shorter hike or bike ride to nearby Jefferson Elementary School or to downtown restaurants and shops. The nearest existing rail crossings are at Carlsbad Village Drive and Tamarack Avenue.

A crossing at Chestnut has been discussed for years, and still remains a distant vision.

“It’s very preliminary,” said Frank Boensch, an analyst for the city. “The community has indicated they would be interested in seeing something that would provide better access for the Barrio.”

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Escondido to triple road repair funding

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Apr 102013
 

Council directs staff to spend minimum of $4.7 million yearly on maintenance work

Source: David Garrick, UT San Diego

— Faced with some of the region’s shabbiest roads, Escondido City Council members decided this week to nearly triple how much the city spends each year on paving and street maintenance.

“The condition of our streets just befuddles me,” Councilman Ed Gallo told his colleagues during their meeting Wednesday night. “We deserve nicer streets as residents of the city.”

More than 12 percent of Escondido’s roads are either “failing” or in “serious” condition, according to a recently completed evaluation of every city street.

And an additional 15.5 percent were deemed either “very poor” or “poor” by the survey, the first of its kind in city history.

On Wednesday, council members directed city staffers to spend a minimum of $4.7 million per year on road maintenance. The city has been spending about $1.7 million annually, and was slated to continue spending that amount.

“In the past, we have neglected the basic core functions of the city,” said Mayor Sam Abed, vowing to shift Escondido’s priorities.

Abed said he was embarrassed when a recent survey of regional road quality conducted by San Marcos found that Escondido had the worst roads in the region.

Ed Domingue, the city’s public works director, said Escondido’s roads would be even worse without some one-time state and federal grants the city received during the last four years.

Those grants boosted spending on road maintenance to an average of $3.5 million per year, including $5 million during the fiscal year that ends June 30.

Without the sharp increase in road maintenance money that council members approved Wednesday, Escondido would face a steadily increasing percentage of crumbling roads.

Projections created by city staff show that 42 percent of Escondido’s roads would be in failing or serious condition by 2029 if annual maintenance and paving expenditures remained at $1.7 million.

Things would get worse at the same level of expenditure because crumbling roads cost much more to repair and maintain, Julie Procopio, assistant director of public works, told the council Wednesday.

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Some of San Diego’s Worst Sidewalks

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Feb 212013
 

The Stumblr is a blog devoted to documenting some of the worst sidewalks in San Diego, California.  Some of these sidewalks would make for good X-Games ramps.

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See more bad San Diego sidewalks here…

Safety measures OK’d for San Elijo Road

 General, Infrastructure Management, Planning, Risk Management  Comments Off on Safety measures OK’d for San Elijo Road
Feb 082013
 
Eastbound San Elijo Road at Eclipse Drive

Eastbound San Elijo Road at Eclipse Drive

Source: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/feb/07/traffic-safety-san-elijo-road-eclipse-san-marcos/

By Chris Nichols 10:01 a.m.Feb. 7, 2013

SAN MARCOS, CA — New safety measures are on the way for a curvy stretch of San Elijo Road in San Marcos, following complaints from residents about recent crashes near Eclipse Drive.

The stretch of road is about a mile north of San Elijo Hills elementary and middle schools.

On Wednesday night, the San Marcos Traffic Safety Commission approved plans to add: A new curve warning and speed advisory sign in the roadway’s median; new reflective covers for all new and existing traffic signs in the area; and raised pavement markers.

The citizen panel also OK’d plans to request more speed enforcement from the sheriff’s department along the 45 mph four-lane stretch of San Elijo, which has a steep grade and connects the upscale community of roughly 7,000 people to the rest of San Marcos.

Finally, the panel also approved requests for San Diego Gas & Electric Co. to install guard rails to protect company utility boxes that have been damaged in past crashes; and approved plans to install speed radar feedback signs for the area at a later date.

Residents in nearby neighborhoods lost power for several hours after two recent crashes into the utility boxes.

In the past five years, the city has logged five traffic accidents along San Elijo Road near Eclipse, which feeds into the Meridian and Mariner’s Landing residential neighborhoods of about 200 homes, according to a city report.

Causes for those accidents included unsafe speed, improper turning, drunken driving or a combination of those, the report said.

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