Project update (01/27/2021): Thank you for providing comments on the concept design for 900 West and California Avenue. The report on what we heard is now available for reading.
900 West California Avenue
900 West and California Avenue is the intersection of two major neighborhood streets that run through the Glendale neighborhood. The area surrounding this intersection is primarily residential, and there are parks, schools, and community centers nearby that draws frequent bicycle and pedestrian activity.
900 West provides access to several parks to the north and Riley Elementary to the south. California Avenue is a connection to the Sorenson Unity and Community Centers, Glendale Middle School, and the Glendale Branch City Library. This intersection also serves as a link to I-15 and to the east side of the City, which attracts significant vehicle traffic.
Due to the nature of this intersection – one that routinely experiences families walking and bicycling , and vehicle through traffic – community members have expressed a desire to make safety improvements. These improvements are supported by a citywide effort to make street livability enhancements.
When completed, the goal of this project is to make safety improvements for all users through improved design features; particularly for children going to the area schools and community centers. Once completed, residents will enjoy a more comfortable travel experience at this intersection.
What we’ve heard!
Thank you to everyone who provided comments on the draft concept design. Below you’ll find a summary report from our first round of public input, the new report on the concept design and letters of support from Glendale Community Council.
We have a conceptual design! Based on project goals (safety, accessibility) and community input, the below design approach emerged. Please note that the final design may differ from the draft conceptual design based on feedback, constructability, maintenance, budget, and other issues identified during the design process.
What is a draft design?
A preliminary (or conceptual) design articulates the form and function of what is intended to be constructed. As the process advances and the design is engineered and refined, the preliminary design will undergo changes. Changes could be made to small details or to larger functional elements of the design, and are generally the result of feedback from the public, changes needed to comply with City standards, to address constructability issues, or to meet the project budget.
Frequently Asked Questions
What changes are being proposed?
Reducing vehicle speeds and improving safety for people walking and riding bikes, especially children and families, are priorities for this project. To address this, the City is proposing to add pedestrian safety islands and corner islands that separate vehicle traffic from all others at the intersection – a design also referred to as a protected intersection. We are also exploring the use of paint and posts to aid the functionality of this design. See the proposed concept design for details.
How will these changes improve safety at this intersection?
The new design proposes to add pedestrian safety islands, corner turning islands, and intersection crossing markings. These new elements help to shorten crossing distances, create additional protected queuing areas for people walking and biking, and slows turning vehicles while improving motorists’ line of sight with people using the crosswalk and bike crossing. Intersection crossing markings for bikes provide directional guidance and help visually indicate to motorists where bikes will be crossing.
Will vehicle traffic be impacted?
To add the pedestrian safety islands, we will need to remove existing dedicated right turn lanes and wide shoulders at the intersection. Right turns will be made from the through lane, similar to other intersections in the City where separate right turn lanes aren’t provided. To better understand the impact of this change to motorists, the City reviewed traffic operations at the intersection (using pre-COVID traffic information). The project team found that motorists traveling during the weekday peak hour may experience a small increase in delay with removal of the right turn lanes. Motorists traveling during the peak hour (“evening commute”) should expect a small increase in delay, on average, when driving through the intersection after completion of the project.
Will there be changes made to the traffic signals?
In summer of 2020, the City installed new traffic monitoring devices at this intersection and have been actively working to optimize traffic operations and pedestrian crossing safety. The vehicle detection technology installed at this signal now allows the City’s signal team to better optimize signal timings with the measured traffic volumes. With this new technology in place, the City will continue to monitor and analyze this intersection to determine if/what additional changes may be needed in the future.
Will the street be reconstructed?
No. Existing pavement, curbs, and sidewalk will not be replaced.
How did community input inform the proposed changes?
To better understand people’s experience using this intersection, the City surveyed residents in September 2020 and received over 200 responses. The project team also met with the Glendale Community Council and residents at the intersection to discuss the project. Feedback we received helped guide the changes being proposed.
Please see the community engagement section of the website for project survey reports and other community input we received.
Are speed reduction or other changes being made to other areas of California Ave or 900 West?
This project is focused on safety improvements at the intersection. However, feedback and analysis from the project may help inform plans and projects at other locations in the future.
When will these changes happen?
We anticipate a final design to be completed by Spring of 2021, and construction during the summer of 2021.
How will this project be funded?
Funding for this project will come from the City’s Capital Improvement Program.
Will greenery/landscaping be incorporated into the design?
This project would not create additional park strip area. However, we are exploring opportunities to incorporate planters where possible. It’s likely that any greening and other aesthetic improvements would come later in coordination with the Public Lands Division who maintains landscaped areas.
How will emergency and maintenance vehicles access the intersection?
The proposed design changes to this intersection will be reviewed by all appropriate parties to ensure that maintenance and emergency vehicle access is not an issue.
Social Media: @SLCgov @SLCmoves
Project Manager: Will Becker
Phone: (801) 535-6569