Eastside Costa Mesa Neighbors' Group

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FAQ'S - SAFE ROUTE TO SCHOOL GRANT (PART 1)

Frequently Asked Questions 

  • Will the SRTS project affect my property value?  Yes - most definitley - but in a positive way.  Imagine a safer neighborhood with sidewalks, bike routes, slower traffic, improved landscaping, etc. - all of these benefits that come from the SRTS project will enhance the community and thereby raise property values.
  • Will the SRTS project reduce parking?  The city staff has gone to great lengths to make sure that the current parking needs are maintained.  They have conducted up to 6 studies on various days and times making sure to evaluate the parking at its highest peak.  With the project in place there will still be more available parking than is needed.  The reduction is in empty spaces but there will still be a surplus of empty spaces available compared to actual parking needed.
  • Will the reduced available parking lower my property value?  Let's consider other neighborhoods where there is very little available parking, i.e., Balboa Island, Corona Del Mar, Seal Beach, Belmont Shores, etc. Property values have certainly not been affected by the parking situation in these areas.  And remember - as noted above - the SRTS project will still maintain ample parking - over and above what is actually needed or used by Eastside residents.
  • Will the improvements cause vehicles to be closer in proximity?  No.  In actuality, because the street is being narrowed, the vehicles and traffic in some options will either be farther away from a home's frontage and in other cases the project will provide a sidewalk and/or landscape buffer between a home and the traffic on the street.  
  • Which blocks of Broadway will be narrowed?  The extent of the project runs the length of Broadway from Fullerton St. to Irvine Blvd.  Because the blocks from Fullerton St. to Tustin allow for a narrowing (street is currently 50' wide) the options proposed will narrow the street 4'.  From Tustin to Irvine Blvd. the street is already narrower so it will remain at its current width.
  • I am worried that traffic will be diverted onto my street.  Once completed will the SRTS project divert traffic to neighboring streets?  No.  The methods used for implementing safety along Broadway will not divert traffic.  Chokers, pop-outs, possible medians will only help to slow traffic on Broadway and thereby providing a safer street.  The city has made sure not to incorporate diversionary items such as speed bumps, diverters, stop signs, etc.
  • Broadway is used for bicycling.  Will the SRTS project remove the current bike path?  Because Broadway is on the master plan for bike routes the bike route must still be in place.  In addition, one of the criteria of the project is that a bike lane remains whether it is located adjacent to traffic or placed away from traffic.
  • If it isn't broken, why fix it? The fact is that Broadway is 'broken' - it is not a safe street for children, pets, pedestrians & bicyclists.  This grant will offer the opportunity for Broadway to now be a safer street by providing sidewalks on which to walk; by providing traffic calming items such as chokers, pop-outs and possible medians; and, by introducing more greenscape and trees - proven to be effective speed reducers.
  • Why do we need sidewalks which introduce more concrete?  Broadway currently has sporadically placed sidewalks.  Some blocks have continual sidewalks while others have intermittent sidewalk placements.  Sidewalks provide a safe path for pedestrians - adults and children alike, and a manageable path for the handicapped.  While it is true more concrete will be introduced by virtue of the fact that new sidewalks will be implemented, the fact is that this project also provides for new landscaping with a proposed placement of at least 4 trees and greenscaped areas at each intersection, at all pop-out locations, and also at any possible median locations.  So why not look at it as - we are actually gaining more greenspace?
  • Will existing driveways be retained?  Yes.
  • Why aren't stop signs included in the SRTS project?  Stop signs lead to a diversion in traffic - diverting traffic to neighboring streets.  This goes against the criteria of the project.
  • Isn't there more potential for DUI motorists hitting chokers, pop-outs or medians?  The potential increase with DUI drivers is in their hitting just about anything.
  • Why is the City of Costa Mesa spending money on this project?  The City is not spending any city money on this project.  All funds are coming from a Federal grant.
  • What happens if we do not use the grant money?  If the City of Costa Mesa does not use the money then the money goes back to the Federal government.
  • Can the money be saved and used at a later date?  No. 
  • Can the money be applied to other projects?  No.  This money is specific to the Safe Route To School program.  It must be used for that objective and Broadway is the only street on the Eastside that qualifies for the program.
  • Will the City Council actually be voting for a specific option?  No.  The City Council will only be voting to allow city staff to move forward with this project.  No specific design is set in stone at this point.  Once the green light is given then the actual design phase begins with continual input from the residents.