Carmen Road Pedestrian Bridge Update - It's moving along!
Last week, a meeting was held with senior city staff to outline the next steps in the Carmen Bridge project development process. Arranged by your neighbor and bike/ped advocate, Byron Rovegno, we are glad to report positive progress. At the city's mid-year budget review next February, funding will be recommended to conduct an engineering study for the prefabricated bike/ped bridge.
This funding will keep the project on track for a targeted implementation 2 to 3 years out. Walk-Bike has also obtained a budgetary estimate for the project to be in the low-to-mid six digits category - a non-trivial but very reasonable figure for a great neighborhood amenity. Around the first of the year, we will ask you to write the council in support of this proposed project.
Carmen Project re-cap from June 2017:
The Carmen Bridge Task Force of 15 of your neighbors presented the
evaluation petition to the Cupertino City Council on June 6th. Led and presented by Task Force leaders Jian He, Carol Lim, her middle school daughter, and Gerhard Eschelbeck, they eloquently spoke about the dangers of not having a convenient or safe crossing of Stevens Creek Blvd for their children walking/biking to school.
The petition was signed by nearly 170 residents in the immediate Scenic, Carmen/Cupertino Road and Stevens Creek School area. While the council was aware of the initiative, the concept and specific area issues were well explained and understood by the council and city staff at the meeting. The council has been listening to you - they, too, want to make Cupertino safer and healthier for its residents and school children.
This year and next the city staff will be quite busy implementing several important phases of the Cupertino Master Bike Plan. It was suggested by Mayor Vaidhyanathan and City Manager Brandt that the study might be incorporated this year into the Master Pedestrian Plan - currently in development. Either way, we anticipate that the evaluation can be performed during the next fiscal year.
While the idea has very broad support from the immediate neighborhoods, there have been concerns and even objections from some residents - which are to be expected. Primary concerns focused on neighborhood safety, privacy and cost. The community will have the next year or two to understand the different scopes of a potential bridge and its impact.
We know that trails and bike routes improve safety, security and health of our residents. For example, the city (per the SC Sheriff) hasn't sustained any crime incidents at the Scenic Circle access to Blackberry Farms since it was opened many years ago.
We should also be reminded about the terrible traffic at our school sites:
- The K-5 Stevens Creek School student population in the Scenic neighborhood is ~130... or 260 car trips per day to Vista Knoll or Starling Drive. Likewise, the nearly
- 350 middle and high-schoolers from the SCS neighborhood create ~700 car trips/day on Orange/McClellan/Linda Vista Dr. to KMS and MVHS. More bike/ped use will help decrease car congestion in those neighborhoods!
Walk-Bike Cupertino and the Scenic/SCS neighbors in support of the Carmen Pedestrian Bridge project understand that bike routes improve personal and neighborhood safety, health and connect the community for students - plus it's easier to get to know your neighbors when you're walking and not in your car!
Walk-Bike Cupertino thanks you for your support of this great idea and will keep you updated as the project progresses throughout the next city fiscal year.
All the best to you,