Second community meeting for Bradshaw & Sheldon Road Intersection, February 16

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  • #177012

    EGL Admin
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    Received this email below from the City of Elk Grove regarding the proposed changes at the intersection of Bradshaw & Sheldon Roads. There will be a second meeting so that city staff can answer questions from Elk Grove residents about the proposal. The options are a roundabout (traffic circle) or a traffic signal.

    Dear Elk Grove Community Member,

    This communication is to inform you that the planned discussion of the Sheldon Road and Bradshaw Road Bridge Replacement and Intersection improvements with City Council on January 27th has been postponed and another community meeting scheduled for the evening of February 16th. Details of the community meeting and rescheduled City Council discussion are highlighted below.

    On January 14th, the City hosted a community open house about the future improvement to the Sheldon Road and Bradshaw Road intersection. The goal of that meeting was to share information about the improvement options (signal or roundabout) and ask for community preferences. At that meeting and through follow up communications, several participants expressed concern about the materials presented, concerns about limitations in meeting format, and requested additional information before proceeding with City Council discussion. Your input has been taken into consideration and as a result, the City has decided to postpone City Council consideration and host another meeting with the community to respond to questions and comments and to allow for additional questions and discussion in an open forum.

    Please join us!
    Follow Up Community Meeting
    Sheldon Road & Bradshaw Road Bridge Replacement and Intersection Improvements

    Tuesday, February 16, 2016
    Pleasant Grove High School (same room as the 1/14 open house)
    9531 Bond Road, Elk Grove, CA 95624
    6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

    Staff and consultants will start the meeting by sharing results from the last meeting, presenting the questions and comments raised from the January 14th meeting, along with responses and additional information as appropriate. The majority of the time will be allocated to any questions or comments you may have about the project and options. Community input from the meetings will be summarized along with any staff recommendation for City Council consideration on March 9th. Thank you for your continued input and participation!

    If you have questions or would like additional information, please contact Tom Metcalf, Sr. Project Manager, at TMetcalf@elkgrovecity.org or (916) 478-2281.

    Regards,
    Abby Woods
    Community Engagement + Facilitation

    City of Elk Grove
    Mobile: (415) 710-3692
    Email: awoods@elkgrovecity.org

  • #291837

    EGL Admin
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    Here’s a poll we are doing on Facebook, asking residents what they would like to see done at the intersection.

    https://poll.fbapp.io/bradshaw-and-sheldon-intersection?from=user_wall&ref_id=9ey1tj

  • #291853

    Bainc
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    I saw another person point out the bias in your poll and I have to agree. Cost isn’t the only factor, it’s one of several factors. What about average travel times being lower with a traffic circle? Only pointing out one difference between the two shows your bias.

  • #291854

    Bainc
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    I saw another person point out the bias in your poll and I have to agree. Cost isn’t the only factor, it’s one of several factors. What about average travel times being lower with a traffic circle? Only pointing out one difference between the two shows your bias.

  • #291838

    EGL Admin
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    @bainc 123453 wrote:

    I saw another person point out the bias in your poll and I have to agree. Cost isn’t the only factor, it’s one of several factors. What about average travel times being lower with a traffic circle? Only pointing out one difference between the two shows your bias.

    The travel times given by city staff were not accurate.

  • #291855

    Bainc
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    So why not word the poll saying “do you want a light or traffic circle? Per the staff report probability of fatalities will be higher with a stop light.”

    I’m on the fence on this one, maybe leaning toward the traffic circle buy come on. Having a poll with the only information of importance being cost is not impartial.

    How were their traffic times wrong?

  • #291839

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    @bainc 123461 wrote:

    How were their traffic times wrong?

    Because they took the average time over 24 hours for the stop sign. The difference between the traffic circle and the light was something like 16 seconds. They said the average time was 224 seconds right now during the day. Big deal. In the morning and evenings it could be 10 minutes. The rest of the day it could 10 seconds.

    So why not word the poll saying “do you want a light or traffic circle? Per the staff report probability of fatalities will be higher with a stop light.”

    and add that there will be more accidents with a roundabout? The biggest factor is going to be cost. $1.8 million is a lot of money. Leaving out drunk drivers, there aren’t that many fatalities at stop lights. There are more serious accidents. At Calvine and Bradshaw, there has been one fatality that I know of and that was a drunk driver, so let’s toss out the fatality part of the argument. There are many more fatalities not at intersections than there are at them. More people have died driving on Bradshaw than at any intersections.

  • #291840

    EGL Admin
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    And honestly my poll bias is nothing compared to the bias presented by city staff at the first meeting. That was ridiculous. All they said about the traffic light was, everyone knows what a traffic signal is. Then spent 20 minutes talking about how great the traffic circle was and paid short shrift to the cost. It was almost matter of fact, ho hum, the circle cost $1.8 million more, but did we tell you how great the circle is? And nothing mentioned about the future of Bradshaw at all. They are going to answer all those questions on the 16th. In the two polls I have going, one on FB and one on Nextdoor, both are over 70% in favor of a light.

  • #291860

    coffeebreak
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    We were stationed in Europe for 6 years where traffic circles are the norm. It was clear to our family how much safer they were, and not just for cars/drivers… here are some points to consider:

    1. How many horrific car accidents have you seen – or nearly been in – because someone has run a red light? My husband and I had the most horrific near-miss at Bradshaw and Jackson – TWICE. People run lights here ALL the time. The worst that can happen in a round-about is a fender bender, with no loss of life or injury.

    2. NO flashing “gotcha” camera – and the subsequent ticket in the mail… because there is no risk of running a red light.

    3. Maintenance costs are minimal (just routine road repair, as with any road). No lights to maintain.

    4. NO electricity cost.

    5. When traffic lights go belly up — it causes chaos (suddenly people forget the 4 way stop rules) – and creates a risky situation (and a little road rage – ha).

    6. Safer for pedestrians and bicyclists.

    The one thing that would concern me are motorcyclists trying to go between lanes – I would hope some rules prohibiting that would apply to round abouts. THAT would be dangerous.

    Hope this offers some insight. 🙂

  • #291861

    coffeebreak
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    Did they do any price comparisons on costs of traditional traffic lights (maintenance, electricity, etc) over a period of time, compared to the minimal costs of a round about? I guess what I’m asking is will the round-about’s higher price tag eventually correct itself (pay itself off) because of its minimal costs to maintain vs traffic lights?

  • #291841

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    @coffeebreak 123518 wrote:

    Did they do any price comparisons on costs of traditional traffic lights (maintenance, electricity, etc) over a period of time, compared to the minimal costs of a round about? I guess what I’m asking is will the round-about’s higher price tag eventually correct itself (pay itself off) because of its minimal costs to maintain vs traffic lights?

    No they didn’t. They did mention the cost of maintenance for lights. It would take forever though to recoup that $1.8 million.

  • #291851

    madforplaid
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    I would prefer a stoplight because I’ve seen how people drive in the two traffic circles on EG Blvd. between Waterman and Bradshaw. Some drivers don’t yield coming into the traffic circle, and have almost hit me. A couple of times cars have stopped in the traffic circle to let me in, which is just as dangerous because they could be rear ended. That all happens in quieter intersections than Bradshaw and Sheldon.

  • #291842

    EGL Admin
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    Tonight is the second meeting. I will be taking a video and broadcasting it live on my personal FB page. Just search for Doc Souza and you can find it. it will be public. I will try to post a link to our website FB page too, but it depends on the Wifi.

  • #291843

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    I took two videos of the meeting tonight. The first is 90 minutes and the second is 30 minutes. At the last meeting they had people vote at the end of the night on the two proposals. The vote that night was 32-25 in favor of a roundabout.

    At the meeting tonight they did the same thing. When I left the meeting just about everyone has voted and the vote was reversed. It was 33 in favor of a light and 22 in favor of a roundabout. That number could have changed slightly with a few more votes. The only people at the meeting who spoke in favor were residents in the immediate area. A few people said they switched their vote from a roundabout to a light since the last meeting.

    Here is the link to Part 1 of the video
    https://www.facebook.com/doc.souza.5/videos/10207457247283637/

    part 2 https://www.facebook.com/doc.souza.5/videos/10207457556091357/

    The city council will be making a decision on March 9. I urge you to let them know your preference and make your voice heard. Councilmen Detrick and Hume attended part of the meeting tonight.

    Gary Davis gdavis@elkgrovecity.org,
    Steve Ly stevely@elkgrovecity.org,
    Steve Detrick sdetrick@elkgrovecity.org,
    Darren Suen dsuen@elkgrovecity.org,
    Patrick Hume phume@elkgrovecity.org
    jlindgren@elkgrovecity.org (city clerk) he will note your email in the official records.

    I commented after the last meeting about the process and how I felt the staff was pushing towards the round about and my opinion has not changed on that after this meeting. I commented on the video that I felt the meeting itself one sided and was meant to show that they want a roundabout and this is why and they spent the meeting answering questions about the round about and it was obvious that is what the staff wants. We have done a poll here and a poll on Facebook. The poll on Facebook has 429 votes with 80% in favor of a traffic light. So we have 3 polls that show the preference is a traffic light. The meeting tonight, the poll on here and the poll on Facebook. The roundabout will cost $1.8 million more. That extra money is coming out of the roadway funds. That could be used for other roads. Rumor has it the city may be asking for a sales tax increase. You can’t spend $1.8 million more than is necessary, essentially to appease a few residents who live on Sheldon and then turn around and ask for a tax increase to pay for other projects. A round about is not rural. There will be street lights at the intersection either way to illuminate it, so that takes away the rural feel of it. The issue of how traffic will flow through there during peak traffic times really can’t be addressed. There will be times when one lane of traffic will flow throw and the other lanes will have to wait.

    Watch the videos, make up your own mind and please let the city council know either way what you think.

  • #291856

    Bainc
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    Thanks for filming Doc. I watched from home then made my way down there. The crowd had varying opinions both for and against.

    One thing I found interesting was the pro stop light crowd seemed to dismiss the efficiency of the roundabout saying they’d need to wait up to a minute to enter the circle. Or somehow the average wait times were inaccurate because it’s not possible for a roundabout to be more efficient than a stop light. The data shows both of these are inaccurate. The cost and land taken are the real issues not the efficiency between the two.

  • #291867

    SummerScene
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    I have been following this forum for just over a year now and I am a resident of Elk Grove since 2000. I decided to register to the forum to state my opinion on this issue. I live in the adjacent neighborhood by the two roundabouts on EG Blvd and I’ve rarely seen accidents on it. Knock on wood. However, that section of EG Blvd is not nearly as busy as Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am a civil engineer with only education experience when it comes to transportation. In my opinion, I still prefer the roundabout over the light at the Bradshaw/Sheldon intersection mainly for three reasons, 1) Highest volume of traffic occurs only in the north-south direction 2) Bradshaw/Jackson light intersection existing conditions 3) Balance. I remember listening to a guest lecturer from a private civil engineering firm here in Sacramento and he had worked on several roundabout projects in California. He made a strong point at the end of his lecture regarding the safety of roundabouts, yes they are strange and confusing when first entering one, but, a roundabout only requires the entering vehicle driver to look left (with the exception of pedestrians). In essence, it’s not as complicated as people think.

    In terms of my three reasons, first, being that the entire system is a yield, therefore vehicles must slow down. Regardless of slowing down and yielding, an entire stream from the north/south can efficiently proceed without significant delay before the next stream arrives (from Bradshaw/Calvine or Bradshaw/Bond). Pedestrians/Bicyclists are a concern, however, from my 15 years of commuting from EG Blvd to Hwy 50 via Bradshaw, I rarely see any pedestrians/bicyclists crossing the intersection. Two, if a light were to be constructed, I can anticipate the conditions to be similar to Bradshaw/Jackson. During peak hours at this intersection, north/south can be significantly congested, regardless of signal timing efficiency. I’m sure regular commuters know what I am talking about. The backup can be as far as Bradshaw/Kiefer and Bradshaw/Elder Creek depending on the time of day. This intersection is lighted, four lanes north/south, and includes turning lanes. But as a regular commuter, it’s not producing much efficiency as I’ve waiting more than 6-8 minutes before reaching the green light cycle. Lastly, three, the balance provided by a roundabout at this location outweighs the light in my opinion. Again, I know they are strange and confusing but regular commuters should have no problem figuring out the pattern and system after many passings. I’ve observed much more speeding and red lighting in the past year or two all over Elk Grove intersections, it frightens me. I tend to look both ways more often now when my light is green because I can say with confidence that I see at least 1 red lighter every day now. That’s scary. Also, I believe a roundabout accommodates varying traffic volumes. There will always be maximums and minimums. Some days this intersection isn’t as busy as other days even at the same time of day and I jump with joy when I decide take the risk on Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am no transportation engineer, but I think a roundabout will be the cost-effective option accommodating existing and future growth in the area as we are experiencing in Elk Grove.

    Just my two cents.

  • #291844

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    @bainc 124293 wrote:

    Thanks for filming Doc. I watched from home then made my way down there. The crowd had varying opinions both for and against.

    One thing I found interesting was the pro stop light crowd seemed to dismiss the efficiency of the roundabout saying they’d need to wait up to a minute to enter the circle. Or somehow the average wait times were inaccurate because it’s not possible for a roundabout to be more efficient than a stop light. The data shows both of these are inaccurate. The cost and land taken are the real issues not the efficiency between the two.

    I think the efficiency can be debated during heavy traffic times. Most traffic is on Bradshaw, but there is still quite a bit on Sheldon. I am curious what happens when the Bradshaw traffic is a steady stream and how the Sheldon traffic will merge. Plus this is a two lae roundabout, which is a little more confusing. If a driver gets in the inside lane wants to to turn right then they have to cut someone off in the outer lane. Someone compared the ones on EG Blvd to this and that is not really the same. You have far, far less traffic and the speed limit is much less. At Bradshaw/Sheldon you will have cars going 55+ heading into the intersection. They had a simulation of a roundabout on a separate screen. it looked really nice and looked a lot like the ones on EG Blvd. Cars nice and spaced out and people yielding. In the morning northbound Bradshaw will be a non stop stream of cars. I think for the rest of the day a roundabout is fine. For that matter a stop sign is fine too because there is no traffic. It’s only from 7 am to 8:30 ish. Then again from 3 pm to 3:45, and again around the 5 pm hour. Other than that, it’s not an issue there.

    As far as I could tell, the people who live on Bradshaw want a light and the ones on Sheldon want a traffic circle. This is going to be a well lit intersection with many street lights. The rural aspect is gone with either proposal. A round about is no more rural than a traffic light. As one person said last night, we already have a blinking light there. Plus Bradshaw is all traffic lights from Calvine to 50. Why change it up? Makes no sense.

    I know this happens all the time, where staff wants to do something one way and they work towards achieving that goal. It’s obvious this was no different. It was we want a roundabout and we are going to show you why it is best for you. I don’t really care about how it works in Europe. I have seen videos of those circles where hundreds of cars are going around at once. Good for them. I am going to be interested to hear the council’s comments on March 9. 60% of the people last night chose a traffic light. 80% chose a light on Facebook. On nextdoor it was 65-70% for a light. None are scientific, but I think its shows what people want. That 60% of the people at the meeting chose a light was surprising to me. Most of these were residents of the area. There was a lot of misinformation last night by some of the residents. One was Sharon Lynes. She said she has never seen anyone pedestrians or bikers use the crosswalks at the EG Blvd Roundabouts. I use that road 2-3 times a day and see people using it all the time.

    Another thing that bugged me was that they aren’t building the with a right turn lane. But the roundabout will have them. The explanation was that it’s because of the rural road standards so they only have to build it to meet minimum standards, and they can’t build it to exceed it because of the rural road issues. That’s why Bradshaw won’t be widened anytime soon. They believe it’s the if you build it, they will come thing. So if they widen bradshaw then more people will use it. That’s possibly true. Back to my point. They have to widen the whole intersection much wider to accommodate a circle, but they won’t widen it more to add the right turn lanes or Bradshaw. A few of the people commented and said that it seemed like the proposal was done just to show off the roundabout and they skimped on the traffic light part.

  • #291845

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    @summerscene 124295 wrote:

    I have been following this forum for just over a year now and I am a resident of Elk Grove since 2000. I decided to register to the forum to state my opinion on this issue. I live in the adjacent neighborhood by the two roundabouts on EG Blvd and I’ve rarely seen accidents on it. Knock on wood. However, that section of EG Blvd is not nearly as busy as Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am a civil engineer with only education experience when it comes to transportation. In my opinion, I still prefer the roundabout over the light at the Bradshaw/Sheldon intersection mainly for three reasons, 1) Highest volume of traffic occurs only in the north-south direction 2) Bradshaw/Jackson light intersection existing conditions 3) Balance. I remember listening to a guest lecturer from a private civil engineering firm here in Sacramento and he had worked on several roundabout projects in California. He made a strong point at the end of his lecture regarding the safety of roundabouts, yes they are strange and confusing when first entering one, but, a roundabout only requires the entering vehicle driver to look left (with the exception of pedestrians). In essence, it’s not as complicated as people think.

    In terms of my three reasons, first, being that the entire system is a yield, therefore vehicles must slow down. Regardless of slowing down and yielding, an entire stream from the north/south can efficiently proceed without significant delay before the next stream arrives (from Bradshaw/Calvine or Bradshaw/Bond). Pedestrians/Bicyclists are a concern, however, from my 15 years of commuting from EG Blvd to Hwy 50 via Bradshaw, I rarely see any pedestrians/bicyclists crossing the intersection. Two, if a light were to be constructed, I can anticipate the conditions to be similar to Bradshaw/Jackson. During peak hours at this intersection, north/south can be significantly congested, regardless of signal timing efficiency. I’m sure regular commuters know what I am talking about. The backup can be as far as Bradshaw/Kiefer and Bradshaw/Elder Creek depending on the time of day. This intersection is lighted, four lanes north/south, and includes turning lanes. But as a regular commuter, it’s not producing much efficiency as I’ve waiting more than 6-8 minutes before reaching the green light cycle. Lastly, three, the balance provided by a roundabout at this location outweighs the light in my opinion. Again, I know they are strange and confusing but regular commuters should have no problem figuring out the pattern and system after many passings. I’ve observed much more speeding and red lighting in the past year or two all over Elk Grove intersections, it frightens me. I tend to look both ways more often now when my light is green because I can say with confidence that I see at least 1 red lighter every day now. That’s scary. Also, I believe a roundabout accommodates varying traffic volumes. There will always be maximums and minimums. Some days this intersection isn’t as busy as other days even at the same time of day and I jump with joy when I decide take the risk on Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am no transportation engineer, but I think a roundabout will be the cost-effective option accommodating existing and future growth in the area as we are experiencing in Elk Grove.

    Just my two cents.

    Thanks for chipping in. You make some good points. How do you feel about the extra $1.8 million to build it? One speaker tried to say that the money has to be spend anyway. He was corrected by staff who said, no that money comes out of the city roadway funds.

  • #291857

    Bainc
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    I’m surprised the residents on Bradshaw would want a light. A north or south bound driver that’s looking at a green light from 200 yards away is going to accelerate to try to make it before the light changes. I could easily see some drivers going 65+ through the intersection and there’s a lot of driveways in all directions from the intersection.

  • #291852

    plasmadrive
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    I was unable to make the meeting but I did watch the entire video set. One thing that seems to have been missed is that if the city is wrong in it predictions about the round a bout.. change would be a real problem. With the signal, they can re-program it quickly and almost no cost.

    Another thing I take away from the meeting video is that some people are still stuck in the “rural” past. I moved out here to be rural just like everyone else, but when EG became a city that path was altered and as the future goes, y’all better get over the rural thing.. because it isn’t staying that way. It seems the rural roads plan is what also needs to change.. then they can put the proper intersection and controls here. I my personal opinion, for the good of the over all population and not for me personally, the signal is the only way to go with right and left turn lanes. I like round a bouts but can’t see it working in the busy times. And to be quite honest, other than the busy times in the morning for the schools and the afternoon for the schools and work commute.. there is no problem that I can see with the 4 way stop.

  • #291868

    SummerScene
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    @EGL Admin 124301 wrote:

    Thanks for chipping in. You make some good points. How do you feel about the extra $1.8 million to build it? One speaker tried to say that the money has to be spend anyway. He was corrected by staff who said, no that money comes out of the city roadway funds.

    A $1.8 million difference isn’t all too bad in terms of alternative selection and not a significant deal breaker for me. A light not being able to provide enough traffic efficiency even with turn lanes such as Bradshaw/Jackson is not a wise decision on the long run. Imagine selecting the light option and not seeing the results you expect (like Bradshaw/Jackson), increase speeding, increase accidents, maintenance & ops costs etc. The cost to replace the light to a roundabout would be tremendous compared to what we would have to pay now. Yes, it goes the other way too, but studies show the opposite effect with roundabouts as the staff presented. But of course, that wouldn’t happen because we would just have to live with it.

    What I find concerning is the quick reverse in favors from the last meeting. It seems to me that we really do not have enough education and practice with roundabouts to make it our final vote. What I get is that residents are concerned with the complexity of a roundabout. It looks strange, confusing, difficult, and different. That’s true, why? Because two lane roundabouts are not common, especially here in the states. We do not have enough experience to confidently approve the alternative. I tip my hat off to the designers who proposed roundabouts on EG Blvd. I can imagine how backed up EG Blvd / Blackswan Dr and Baypoint Wy would be without one. Even the pedestrian light causes serious back up. We can stick with the same lighted intersection with turn lanes to mitigate the issue, but I honestly think we’ll have a mirror of Bradshaw/Jackson…I hope that doesn’t happen regardless.

  • #291846

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    @plasmadrive 124303 wrote:

    I was unable to make the meeting but I did watch the entire video set. One thing that seems to have been missed is that if the city is wrong in it predictions about the round a bout.. change would be a real problem. With the signal, they can re-program it quickly and almost no cost.

    Another thing I take away from the meeting video is that some people are still stuck in the “rural” past. I moved out here to be rural just like everyone else, but when EG became a city that path was altered and as the future goes, y’all better get over the rural thing.. because it isn’t staying that way. It seems the rural roads plan is what also needs to change.. then they can put the proper intersection and controls here. I my personal opinion, for the good of the over all population and not for me personally, the signal is the only way to go with right and left turn lanes. I like round a bouts but can’t see it working in the busy times. And to be quite honest, other than the busy times in the morning for the schools and the afternoon for the schools and work commute.. there is no problem that I can see with the 4 way stop.

    Another thing I take away from the meeting video is that some people are still stuck in the “rural” past.

    BINGO. Exactly. They have lived there 40+ years in some cases, and they want it to remain how it was when Elk Grove had 10,000 people. That’s just not logical. I don’t think we should let a few angry residents dictate what happens in the area. I am fine with Sheldon being 2 lanes. Bradshaw needs to be 4 lanes, with an intersection like Calvine.

  • #291847

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    @summerscene 124305 wrote:

    A $1.8 million difference isn’t all too bad in terms of alternative selection and not a significant deal breaker for me. A light not being able to provide enough traffic efficiency even with turn lanes such as Bradshaw/Jackson is not a wise decision on the long run. Imagine selecting the light option and not seeing the results you expect (like Bradshaw/Jackson), increase speeding, increase accidents, maintenance & ops costs etc. The cost to replace the light to a roundabout would be tremendous compared to what we would have to pay now. Yes, it goes the other way too, but studies show the opposite effect with roundabouts as the staff presented. But of course, that wouldn’t happen because we would just have to live with it.

    What I find concerning is the quick reverse in favors from the last meeting. It seems to me that we really do not have enough education and practice with roundabouts to make it our final vote. What I get is that residents are concerned with the complexity of a roundabout. It looks strange, confusing, difficult, and different. That’s true, why? Because two lane roundabouts are not common, especially here in the states. We do not have enough experience to confidently approve the alternative. I tip my hat off to the designers who proposed roundabouts on EG Blvd. I can imagine how backed up EG Blvd / Blackswan Dr and Baypoint Wy would be without one. Even the pedestrian light causes serious back up. We can stick with the same lighted intersection with turn lanes to mitigate the issue, but I honestly think we’ll have a mirror of Bradshaw/Jackson…I hope that doesn’t happen regardless.

    You’ve mentioned Bradshaw/Jackson and I don’t see the similarities here. If you did a roundabout at Jackson I don’t think the traffic is any better. I don’t think speeding will be increased with a light. Sure there are some people who will speed up to beat a red light, but that won’t affect the overall speed. In some cases a roundabout could increase speeds too on a more consistent basis because people are going from 55+ to 25, back to 55+. A light would often mean starting from a dead stop. Sometimes it would mean doing 55+ straight through. You can make argument both ways. I am not hugely opposed to a round about if all things are equal. In this case they are not equal. We have $1.8 million more up front. That’s a lot. I can’t justify spending that much more on ONE intersection.
    I didn’t attend any of the meetings on the Sheldon/Waterman intersection so I don’t know how much extra that one cost. Are we looking at $3 million more for 2 intersections then? I don’t know. I am sure it’s at least $2.5 million.

  • #291869

    SummerScene
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    @EGL Admin 124307 wrote:

    You’ve mentioned Bradshaw/Jackson and I don’t see the similarities here. If you did a roundabout at Jackson I don’t think the traffic is any better. I don’t think speeding will be increased with a light. Sure there are some people who will speed up to beat a red light, but that won’t affect the overall speed. In some cases a roundabout could increase speeds too on a more consistent basis because people are going from 55+ to 25, back to 55+. A light would often mean starting from a dead stop. Sometimes it would mean doing 55+ straight through. You can make argument both ways. I am not hugely opposed to a round about if all things are equal. In this case they are not equal. We have $1.8 million more up front. That’s a lot. I can’t justify spending that much more on ONE intersection.
    I didn’t attend any of the meetings on the Sheldon/Waterman intersection so I don’t know how much extra that one cost. Are we looking at $3 million more for 2 intersections then? I don’t know. I am sure it’s at least $2.5 million.

    Bradshaw is pretty much a highway from my experience. I’ve seen too many folks driving 65 mph to keep up with a pack of vehicles to make it in time before the yellow. Roundabouts may not necessarily decrease overall speeding significantly but I’d rather have everyone slow down at an intersection than speed up.

  • #291862

    coffeebreak
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    I wish people would be more open minded about having a traffic-circle/round-about — the cost may seem exceedingly high – but so is the cost of emergency vehicles tending to a head on crash in an intersection… so is the cost of maintaining traffic lights over the course of years to keep them running (replacement, etc).

    I always hesitate to plug how they do things in Europe — this, of course, is not Europe. But living there for 6 years, I came back to the US wondering why we didn’t utilize roundabouts with all our traffic congestion, horrible drivers, red-light runners, and maintenance required when lights stop working (and people suddenly forget the rules for a 4 way stop).

    They’re utilized for a reason in Europe – and that’s safety and efficiency in keeping traffic flowing.

    Twice – we have had our lives flash before our lives by red light runners at Bradshaw & Jackson while waiting at the light. Identical scenarios both time — had we not been conditioned to NOT pull forward when the light turns green, but rather to wait a few seconds JUST IN CASE someone was going to run the light on Bradshaw (heading towards EG) – we would have lost our lives, I have no doubt. Each time the car was going at least 65-70 mph. Took our breath away. Sad truth is – we have terrible drivers who DON’T care, who are DISTRACTED, and who are speeding.

    Round abouts reduce (if not eliminate completely) injuries and deaths that happen when someone runs a red light. THAT alone is worth consideration.

    ** Let me add — that after the 2nd incident — it was SO CLOSE — a matter of MERE INCHES, we KNOW it would have at least killed my husband (driving) – (at the very least, because the driver was FLYING at top speed thru the intersection), that when we got home – we told our kids exactly what they needed to do if something ever happened to us. We were really rattled. *** Both times – both cars were heading INTO Elk Grove, not away from it, both times we were coming home from our favorite restaurant (up near fab 40’s), and both incidents happened at about 6 pm. It was like de ja vu. A round about won’t prevent idiots from getting behind the wheel, but it will slow them down.

  • #291863

    coffeebreak
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    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/11/19/us/19roundabouts.html?_r=0

    “Roundabouts are deemed safer than traditional intersections because their design precludes most high-risk situations. “You virtually eliminate right-angle crashes and head-on collisions, and the collisions that do occur tend to be much less severe,” said Anne McCartt, a senior vice president for research at the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

    Numerous studies have also found that replacing lights and stop signs with roundabouts can reduce harmful emissions by more than 30 percent because there is less starting and stopping.

    Despite these benefits, a circuitous pattern still seems to emerge whenever a community is faced with the specter of a roundabout. Fear and suspicion are manifested in petitions and tense town meetings — and over time they generally mellow into something resembling approval, acceptance or, just as desirable in the world of transportation engineering, apathy.

    Three years ago, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety published a study titled “Long-Term Trends in Public Opinion Following Construction of Roundabouts.” After interviewing 1,802 drivers in six communities, the researchers reported that, on average, only 34 percent had supported roundabouts in their communities before construction. But shortly after the roundabouts were in place, the number rose to 57 percent. After a year or more, the number increased to 69 percent.”

  • #291848

    EGL Admin
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    So should we take out all the stop lights and install roundabouts? Overall accidents are higher with roundabouts. They are less serious.

  • #291859

    Bainc
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    @EGL Admin 124453 wrote:

    So should we take out all the stop lights and install roundabouts? Overall accidents are higher with roundabouts. They are less serious.

    I’ll answer for myself. I wouldn’t take out lights and have then replaced by roundabouts but I’d consider adding them when intersections are being widened and/or improved.

    I found another local location with a roundabout that’s two lanes entering/exiting. Rocklin Road heading west from I-80. I remember one woman at the meeting keep bringing up two lane roundabouts and vehicles from the other direction not being able to get in. Seemed like an exaggeration. Seems to work there and probably higher traffic volumes considering it’s near a freeway exit.

  • #291864

    coffeebreak
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    *deleted*

  • #291866

    coffeebreak
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    @summerscene 124295 wrote:

    I have been following this forum for just over a year now and I am a resident of Elk Grove since 2000. I decided to register to the forum to state my opinion on this issue. I live in the adjacent neighborhood by the two roundabouts on EG Blvd and I’ve rarely seen accidents on it. Knock on wood. However, that section of EG Blvd is not nearly as busy as Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am a civil engineer with only education experience when it comes to transportation. In my opinion, I still prefer the roundabout over the light at the Bradshaw/Sheldon intersection mainly for three reasons, 1) Highest volume of traffic occurs only in the north-south direction 2) Bradshaw/Jackson light intersection existing conditions 3) Balance. I remember listening to a guest lecturer from a private civil engineering firm here in Sacramento and he had worked on several roundabout projects in California. He made a strong point at the end of his lecture regarding the safety of roundabouts, yes they are strange and confusing when first entering one, but, a roundabout only requires the entering vehicle driver to look left (with the exception of pedestrians). In essence, it’s not as complicated as people think.

    In terms of my three reasons, first, being that the entire system is a yield, therefore vehicles must slow down. Regardless of slowing down and yielding, an entire stream from the north/south can efficiently proceed without significant delay before the next stream arrives (from Bradshaw/Calvine or Bradshaw/Bond). Pedestrians/Bicyclists are a concern, however, from my 15 years of commuting from EG Blvd to Hwy 50 via Bradshaw, I rarely see any pedestrians/bicyclists crossing the intersection. Two, if a light were to be constructed, I can anticipate the conditions to be similar to Bradshaw/Jackson. During peak hours at this intersection, north/south can be significantly congested, regardless of signal timing efficiency. I’m sure regular commuters know what I am talking about. The backup can be as far as Bradshaw/Kiefer and Bradshaw/Elder Creek depending on the time of day. This intersection is lighted, four lanes north/south, and includes turning lanes. But as a regular commuter, it’s not producing much efficiency as I’ve waiting more than 6-8 minutes before reaching the green light cycle. Lastly, three, the balance provided by a roundabout at this location outweighs the light in my opinion. Again, I know they are strange and confusing but regular commuters should have no problem figuring out the pattern and system after many passings. I’ve observed much more speeding and red lighting in the past year or two all over Elk Grove intersections, it frightens me. I tend to look both ways more often now when my light is green because I can say with confidence that I see at least 1 red lighter every day now. That’s scary. Also, I believe a roundabout accommodates varying traffic volumes. There will always be maximums and minimums. Some days this intersection isn’t as busy as other days even at the same time of day and I jump with joy when I decide take the risk on Bradshaw/Sheldon. I am no transportation engineer, but I think a roundabout will be the cost-effective option accommodating existing and future growth in the area as we are experiencing in Elk Grove.

    Just my two cents.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. I agree with you completely.

    The one thing I recall about the round abouts in Germany/Europe was that there is a heightened awareness by pedestrians – and increased safety for them, as they only have to watch traffic from ONE direction (not all four), they only have to cross ONE lane at a time – at the entrance/exits that they cross (not 4-8 lanes of traffic in the allotted time given by the traffic lights), and drivers only have to watch for pedestrians over ONE shoulder (their right), as well… increasing safety for EVERYONE.

  • #291865

    coffeebreak
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    @EGL Admin 124453 wrote:

    So should we take out all the stop lights and install roundabouts? Overall accidents are higher with roundabouts. They are less serious.

    I’m not sure where the statistics are supporting that (that accidents are higher at round abouts) – but as I said in my statement letter to the “powers that be”/Mayor’s office:

    “The most significant experience I can share from having navigated European round abouts for several years is this: There is virtually NO CHANCE a member of our community will be burying their loved one after a head on collision in a round about. “

    So one has to decide – do we endure a few fender benders as people adapt to navigating a round about, or do we continue to invest in doing it the “old way”, because people are too stubborn to change or learn new things, and would rather live with the greater risk to life?

    A lot to think about…

  • #291849

    EGL Admin
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    Driving is dangerous. Most head on collisions don’t happen at intersections. Those are T Bone jobs. The head on ones happen on 2 lane rural roads. Calvine has a full on stop light. I recall one fatality and that was a drunk driver. Other than that. Elk Grove has had very few fatalities at intersections. Most have been single car people who were drunk. I understand the safety issue and don’t minimize it, but I don’t think that is a factor because we have lights everywhere else. One round about doesn’t make it safer. If safety is the overriding issue, then lets make cars out of Nerf.

    The issue of stop light maintenance is not a factor. It’s less than $5000 a year according to the city staff. How long does it take to pay off $1.8 million at $5K a year? Dropping two intersections in and just expecting people to do with it because Europe does, is not really a good argument. Bradshaw is lights from Calvine to 50. Let’s be consistent.

    I checked on the Sheldon/Waterman intersection costs and there was no review done for a stop light. The city told staff they wanted a round about there and that’s where they went with it. So we don’t know how much extra was spent there, but that round about will require a lot of work as well. It requires the intersection itself be raised and Waterman will be shifted to the east. That required buying up more land. Based on the fact this one on Bradshaw cost $1.8 million more, I would guess that the one on Sheldon would be between $1 million to $1.8 million more than stop light would have been.

    I haven’t written my letter yet.

  • #291858

    Bainc
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    Agreed, stop light maintenance shouldn’t be a consideration. What about average travel times being faster? Everybody complains about traffic and it taking forever to get places then when you have a solution that’s faster everybody complains about costs. Either solution is a much needed improvement and maybe the costs at this location are too much because of the need/size of the bridge but it doesn’t mean roundabouts shouldn’t be considered in multiple locations going forward.

  • #291850

    EGL Admin
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    I think roundabouts are good at locations like Elk Grove Blvd. but then they screwed it to by putting a stop sign in between them. The differences in travel time is something like 20 seconds between the two. That is hard to judge though. It will depend on which way you are going at what time.

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