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City Manager's Office
City Manager's Office
Press Contact: Matthai Chakko, (510) 981-7008

OCTOBER 1 OPEN HOUSE: HELP SHAPE A NEW BIKEWAY ON MILVIA STREET
Help make Milvia Street safer for all road users

Berkeley, California (Monday, September 23, 2019) - Come learn about and give feedback on plans to install a protected bikeway, increase safety at intersections, and calm traffic along Milvia Street - Berkeley's busiest north-south bikeway.

At an October 1st open house, you'll have the opportunity to speak with City staff and provide input on the project to improve the Milvia Street Bicycle Boulevard between Hearst and Blake streets. The City will share the preferred design alternative for the street to look at and comment upon.  

This project proposes to build a protected bikeway - a bicycle lane physically protected from vehicle traffic. The preferred design alternative includes a continuous protected bikeway on either side of Milvia.

To make this happen, the reconfigured street would create several one-way sections. Milvia would be one-way for southbound cars between University Avenue and Center Street as well as between Channing Way and Blake Street. Northbound cars would be one-way between University and Hearst avenues. 

The space created by these one-way sections would prioritize safety improvements for all types of users. Factors we're considering include:

  • reducing conflicts between vehicles and those between vehicles and bikes;
  • creating shorter and more visible pedestrian crossings;
  • improving the pick-up/drop-off area alongside Berkeley High School;
  • accessible parking for people with disabilities; and
  • loading and parking for businesses

At the intersection of Milvia Street and University Avenue, the proposed traffic signal would provide separate crossing times for people driving and people walking and biking. This change would eliminate existing user conflicts at this difficult intersection where Milvia jags as it crosses University. The Milvia Bikeway Project is part of the City's engineering approach to traffic safety, supported by public awareness and enforcement efforts.

The input from you and others will help refine the community's vision for this busy downtown street.

Learn more on the Milvia Bikeway project webpage and join us in person for the Open House:

Milvia Bikeway Open House #2
Tuesday, October 1st  
5:00pm to 7:00pm
Berkeley Public Library
Community Room - 3rd Floor
2090 Kittredge St, Berkeley

Some goals of the project are to: 

• Increase safety for everyone travelling on Milvia, whether walking, biking, or driving
• Close a gap in the City's "low-stress" bikeway network to encourage cycling by Berkeleyans of all ages and abilities
• Maintain and support the economic vitality of the corridor by improving accessibility, walking, and biking access to businesses and transit
• Help achieve the City's Climate Action Plan goals by shifting to the less polluting modes of transportation of walking, biking, and transit

Berkeley has the nation's highest bike-to-work rate for cities over 100,000 residents, and more people are biking than ever before, particularly on Milvia. During the 2-hour peak evening commute, over 500 bicyclists pass through the intersection of Milvia Street and Channing Way. Over 400 bicyclists pass through the intersection of Milvia Street at Hearst Avenue at that time.

Bicycling has been increasing in Berkeley, but there have also been an increasing number of collisions. Between 2001 and 2012, Milvia Street had the highest number of total collisions, suggesting that the road design of this downtown Bicycle Boulevard can be improved. Every road and its needs are different, but an effort completed last year on Hearst Avenue similarly sought to create a corridor for all types of travelers.

This project is the result of existing community planning that identified the need for a safer Milvia Street, and the City needs your continued participation to make it as successful as it can be.

For further questions about the project, please contact Eric Anderson, Senior Planner, at eanderson@cityofberkeley.info. Visit the project website for additional information and project updates.

 

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