Former commissioner offers path background
Regarding Jerry Clements’ column (“Miramonte bike path: No change,” March 6):
I’m a former member of the Los Altos Bicycle and Pedestrian Commission (now the Complete Streets Commission) who reviewed the current Los Altos Bicycle Transportation Plan.
The estimated cost of recommended improvements (primarily a bike path about 10 feet wide on one side) along Miramonte Avenue accounted for the majority (an estimated $1.656 million) of the total cost of recommended bicycle safety projects in the transportation plan. The city applied to the Valley Transportation Authority for a grant to cover the cost of the Miramonte bicycle safety project.
Later, the grant money came through and the city developed a revised project that included installing bicycle lanes on both sides of the road. Parking lanes were to be eliminated where there wasn’t sufficient width to accommodate both parking lanes and bike lanes as well as car lanes.
To make up for the loss of parking along Miramonte, parking spaces were to be developed on adjacent streets.
Recently, the Los Altos City Council decided to cancel the project and forfeit the VTA grant so that council members could perhaps come up with a project residents along the street could agree to. This probably means years of delay to get another grant.
In the meantime, if you are going to bike along Miramonte, and especially if you are not in a group of riders, be sure to wear light or bright clothing so that drivers will see you. And come to public meetings when the Miramonte project is on the agenda.
Is Los Altos really bicycle-friendly?
In the March 6 Town Crier, Jerry Clements wrote about a letter he sent to Los Altos Public Works regarding the Miramonte Avenue bike path back in 2012.
Jerry is still hopeful that the city would widen the 2-foot narrow section of the path that is used by many school kids every day. But one should examine what is done and not what is said.
The fact is that at the time of the construction of the 100 First St. complex, 6 feet of city sidewalk that could have become a nice wide bike lane was given away for the private use of the developer. Considering this, Jerry’s suggestion of PTA moms renting a Bobcat and widening the Miramonte path on their own sounds reasonable.