Do you have a concern about vehicle, bicycle or pedestrian safety?
The Transportation Action Request Form is the first step towards review of your transportation concern, such as changes in parking regulations, or installing stop signs or crosswalks.
How are transportation action requests reviewed and processed?
Once you turn in a request, Engineering Services staff will review it to see if it can be handled administratively, or if it needs to be forwarded to the Circulation Commission for a hearing. Requests forwarded to the Circulation Commission will be scheduled for an upcoming meeting as the agenda load permits. If your request is handled administratively, but not to your satisfaction, you still have the option to appeal in writing to the Circulation Commission, or contest in person at one of its meetings during the Public Comments portion of the agenda.
The Circulation Commission hears requests that cannot be handled administratively by staff. The Commission is responsible for recommending actions to the City Council, such as the installation of traffic control devices, changes in parking, placement of roadway markings and various signs within the right-of-way. The Circulation Commission seeks public input from interested parties prior to making its recommendation. Once the Commission makes a recommendation, staff issues a work order if the work reinforces an existing regulation. If it recommends a new regulation, such as a new stop sign or a change in the speed limit, staff will forward the Commission’s recommendation on to City Council for final consideration.
Many Circulation Commission recommendations that are forwarded to the City Council are included on the Council’s agenda under the “Consent Calendar,” which means “non-controversial” and normally require no further discussion. Items needing discussion by the City Council are listed under “New Business” or "Staff Report". Once City Council has taken an affirmative action on a matter, staff issues a work order or arranges the appropriate follow-up work.
For an overall view of the Transportation Action Request process, in flow chart format, click here.
When should a petition be submitted and who needs to sign it?
If your request will impact a number of people, the City encourages you to submit a Transportation Action Request Petition showing support for your request from those affected by it. Requests that require financial contribution other than by the City (such as some traffic calming measures), require a petition. Additionally, walkways, stop signs, traffic control devices, and changes in parking regulation should be supported by petitions. For an effective petition, the applicant should canvas at least 300 feet, about one block length, in each direction of the area that would be impacted by the request. For example, for a stop sign request at an intersection, the area canvassed should cover about one block length on both sides of the street on all legs of the intersection. You should collect names, addresses and phone numbers of people who sign the petition. Petition forms are also available from City staff.
How will you be notified of the status of your request?
When a request is handled directly by staff, staff will contact you to inform you of the City’s recommended action. When an item is scheduled for the Circulation Commission’s agenda, the City will send you a postcard notifying you of the upcoming meeting. Prior to the Circulation Commission meeting, the City will also send postcards to the property owners within at least 300 feet of the location of your request. Additionally, the City may post signs near that location announcing the meeting.
For subsequent meetings of the Circulation Commission and the City Council, the applicant is responsible for tracking meeting dates. You may look up meeting dates and agendas on the City’s web site here.
Stop signs, crosswalks and traffic control devices: A few things to keep in mind
According to the Caltrans Traffic Manual, a stop sign is not a cure-all and is not a substitute for traffic enforcement. Generally, stop signs should not be used for speed control. Many times the need for a stop sign can be eliminated by other means, such as improving sight distance by removing an obstruction.
Installation of a crosswalk does not automatically change the level of safety of a pedestrian crossing. A marked crosswalk should be used to direct pedestrians where to cross rather than as a safety or protection device. To improve the safety of crossing a street additional remedies may be required.
As a general rule, the City will pay for a solution to a problem where the area affected by the solution is within a public right-of-way. Adjoining property owners are generally responsible for the cost of solutions or parts of solutions located on private property. Walkways, certain traffic calming measures and control devices, and changes in parking are governed by special City policies regarding installation and responsibility of cost.