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San Diego's Bold New Plan for Downtown Cyclists and Walkers

San Diego's downtown, dominated by 3-lane one-way streets engineered to maximize car velocity and traffic flow, may be getting redesigned to make it hospitable for bicyclists and pedestrians.
February 15, 2016, 11am PST | wadams92101
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Nan Palmero

Downtown San Diego's street grid could have made Jane Jacobs proud with its short blocks and multiple cross-streets. Unfortunately, most of that public right of way has been engineered solely for automobile-mobility, with one-way three-lane streets, timed traffic lights, the resultant high speed traffic, parallel parking, and aggressive (and costly) jaywalking enforcement. The auto-oriented street grid leaves little room for cyclists and is inhospitable for walkers, despite the fact that Downtown San Diego's small blocks and concomitant greater number of streets leave ample room to accommodate all modes of mobility.  

All that could soon change. The city has issued a draft of the Downtown San Diego Mobility Plan, years in the making, "with a goal of reducing travel by car and increasing trips by bike and foot" writes dedicated downtown urbanist Bill Keller.  Among the features contained in the plan, 

Perhaps the most ambitious idea is the network of Bike Paths, Lanes, Routes and Cycle Tracks detailed in Chapter 5 Bicycling.  For example, a two-way cycle track separated from traffic would run along the west side of Sixth Ave from Beech St down to L St.  Cycle tracks are also proposed along sections of Pacific Highway, State St, Park Blvd, Grape St, Hawthorne, Beech, Broadway, C St, and J St.

A public workshop is scheduled for February 23rd and the public review period is open until March 11, 2016.  Comments may be submitted at the Mobility Plan website.

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Published on Wednesday, February 10, 2016 in UrbDeZine
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