Have your say on two downtown Berkeley projects

The intersection of Shattuck and University avenues is the second most dangerous intersection in Berkeley for pedestrian collisions and near-misses. The city hopes to change that with the Shattuck reconfiguration project. Image: Google Maps
The intersection of Shattuck and University avenues is the second most dangerous intersection in Berkeley for pedestrian collisions and near-misses. The city hopes to change that with the Shattuck reconfiguration project. Image: Google Maps

The city is seeking community input on two downtown Berkeley projects — the Shattuck Reconfiguration Project and the modernization of the Downtown Berkeley BART station. There are two separate online surveys to take and, in the case of the Shattuck project, there’s a Transportation Commission meeting Thursday to learn more and provide input. The meeting will be held on Oct. 15 at the North Berkeley Senior Center, 1901 Hearst Ave., at 7 p.m.

The city is altering the traffic flow and sidewalks on Shattuck Avenue, between University and Allston Way, to create safer and easier travel by foot, car, bike, and bus.

Take the survey, which is open until Oct, 30. (There’s a drawing to win a free iPad).

According to the city, the goal of the project is for pedestrians to be able to better enjoy downtown as a walkable space. Cars and buses should experience less congestion, and bicyclists should gain safety and ease, they say.


As they relate on the city website: “The main change would affect northbound traffic, which currently has to make a series of turns that add time and create a dangerous dynamic for pedestrians and bicyclists. As detailed in the graphic, the plan would make the west side of Shattuck into a two-way street — eliminating the two turns required to go north.

“That change would cut the northbound commute by 25 seconds per car during the peak, evening hours. Cumulatively, that would be 5 fewer hours per day — or 1,300 fewer hours per year — that northbound cars would be in downtown Berkeley. Time savings would also occur outside of peak traffic hours, and, obviously, buses would also save time.

“Eliminating the two turns to go north also increases safety for pedestrians and bicyclists at Shattuck and University avenues, an intersection that has one of the City’s highest rates of accidents in which cars hit pedestrians or bicyclists. Changing this intersection is a top priority in the City’s Pedestrian Master Plan.

“The project also seeks to enhance the pedestrian experience through landscaping, widened sidewalks, and shorter crosswalks.  Among other things, a raised intersection at Shattuck East and Center Street would calm traffic and make it easier for pedestrians to walk from UC Berkeley to the BART station. Maintaining adequate parking and improving bus service are other goals. The east (northbound) section of Shattuck would become a narrow, one-way street with angled parking, intended primarily for local traffic, buses, and shuttles.”

Design and functionality among goals for BART modernization

Said Siciliana Trevino shortly after 2 p.m.: "Power out all over #Berkeley BART is still running - take a free ride from downtown!" The station is closed as of about 2:40 p.m.
Downtown Berkeley BART station. Photo: Siciliana Trevino

Meanwhile, BART’s Berkeley Station Modernization survey closes at the end of Thursday, Oct. 15.

Take BART Berkeley Station Modernization survey.

The Downtown Berkeley Station Modernization Conceptual Design Plan will establish a blueprint for the Downtown Berkeley Station that identifies and prioritizes long-term improvements, according to the city. It will “provide BART with a vision for modernization and place making, and will identify improvements that bring a high standard of design excellence, functionality, and cost effectiveness.” (This project is separate from plans to redesign Downtown Berkeley ‘s BART Plaza, but will be carried out in conjunction with that work.) The project’s key goals are identified as being to:

  • Enhance Downtown Berkeley Station as a world class gateway to the City of Berkeley and the UC Berkeley campus
  • Modernize and refresh the station to bring it into the 21st century
  • Ensure that the station design reflects BART’s sustainability goals
  • Improve the station’s function, safety, capacity and appearance
  • Incorporate art and community identity into the station
  • Incorporate station amenities to improve customer experience

For more information visit BART’s website.

Related:
Council weighs in on new Downtown Berkeley plaza plans (07.09.15)
Open house displays plans for Shattuck Square facelift (06.12 15)
Berkeley BART plaza plans ‘not a bad first start’ (04.29.14)
Berkeley BART plaza workshop comes Monday (01.30.14)
Downtown Berkeley BART plaza slated for major overhaul (11.26.13)
Berkeley set for $12.7m in downtown transport grants (05.28.13)
Berkeley council approves plans to green downtown (01.30.13)
Berkeley’s downtown BART is all roses as part of clean-up (07.17.12)

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