The City of San Mateo is proposing a separate bicycle/pedestrian bridge to provide an alternative to the existing Hillsdale Boulevard/101 over crossing. The proposed new structure will be located south of the existing Hillsdale Boulevard over crossing, and will connect multi-use paths on either side of Highway 101 between Norfolk and Hillsdale Court. Completion of the bridge is not expected until 2010 to 2011 at the earliest.
The final proposed bridge location and other details are available (PDF): HillsdaleBlvd101OverCrossing.pdf
A drawing of bridge (top view, PDF) is also available: EngPlans.pdf
For information directly from the City of San Mateo contact Gary Heap, Project Manager at (650) 522-7307 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
SVBC Position and Recommendations
We strongly agree that the present configuration of the Hillsdale/101 over-crossing needs improvement to alleviate the danger to pedestrians and bicyclists. We fear that, due to the high cost of the proposal, this project may not find funding and will delay or prevent study and consideration of other, less expensive alternatives. We support the addition to the General Plan of the notion for pedestrian and bicycle improvements at this specific over-crossing; however we do not want to see the City locked into implementing the current proposal.
The proposed bridge is very expensive and will prove to be very inconvenient to many users, especially pedestrians on the north side of Hillsdale Boulevard. The current cost estimate is 7 to almost 10 million. This cost is likely to rise in the future. Due to this high cost we are concerned this project might not be funded and will delay or prevent other less expensive alternatives from being pursued. We strongly agree that the current configuration of this overcrossing is difficult and dangerous for bicyclists and pedestrians and that improvements are needed.
Short Term Recommendation
Add bicycle pocket lanes on Hillsdale Boulevard from Norfolk to Saratoga, placed between the 101 dedicated ramp-access lanes and the right through-lane providing a semi-protected pocket lane for bicyclists. Install push button actuated pedestrian crossing traffic signals at the 4 existing pedestrian crosswalks at the 101 on ramps to provide significant safety improvement to the existing sidewalks.
Long Term Recommendation
There will be a huge increase in traffic across the Hillsdale Boulevard bridge in the coming years due to the new police station, new Kaiser facility and the new Bay Meadows project. Hillsdale Boulevard provides the main 101 access for these new developments and will probably result in changes to the overpass to accommodate the increased traffic. Safe, convenient and usable bicycle and pedestrian facilities must be included in this redesign. To be prepared for this we are developing a list of possible improvements.