Repaving streets, better bike and pedestrian safety discussed by San Jacinto City Council

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The San Jacinto City Council discussed and approved $1,235,558.95 for the rehabilitation of streets and sidewalks in 14 different neighborhoods and accepted recommendations how to keep bicyclists and pedestrians safer on the city streets at their Nov. 19 meeting.

The council with Councilmember Crystal Ruiz excused, awarded the street and sidewalk rehabilitation project to American Asphalt South Inc. who was the lowest of four bidders. The $1.2 million project, with 15% contingency for construction and soft costs, includes the installation of crack seal, slurry, grind and overlay of asphalt roadway.

City engineer Stuart McKibbin said the bids were opened Nov. 12, ranging from $1,235,558 to $1,619,086. American Asphalt, the low bidder, has done other work for the city and other agencies including the city of Perris.

He showed a video map of all the neighborhoods that will have their streets and sidewalks rehabilitated during the next year. The maps of the neighborhood streets are available on the city’s webpages under the Nov. 19 city council meeting agenda and packet.

The council accepted a Complete Streets Safety Assessment with University of California Berkeley recommended Fehr and Peers conducting field visits. The objectives of the CSSA are to improve safety and accessibility for all people walking and biking in San Jacinto. Funding for this program was provided by a grant from the California Office of Traffic Safety through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The final report identifies areas where the city is exceeding national best practices, suggests enhancements to existing programs that already meet national best practices, and identifies opportunities for new policies and practices.

The report also provides ideas and suggestions for safety improvements at four specific locations visited during Fehr and Peers field audit. They focused on demonstrated pedestrian and bicyclist safety concerns near existing schools; collision hot spot locations; key commercial corridors and the availability of typical sites for broader citywide application of safety projects. The selected locations were: San Jacinto Avenue and Midway Street; San Jacinto Avenue between Esplanade Avenue and Commonwealth Avenue; San Jacinto Avenue and Seventh Street and Megan Cope Elementary School.

Staff plans to evaluate the report’s recommendations in the next 120 days and conduct a workshop with Council here the CSSA recommendations will be discussed.

The council also reviewed the recommendations of staff on an ordinance that includes the 2019 California Building Standards and 2019 Fire Code updates. After looking over the lengthy report the council scheduled a Dec. 3 public hearing on those changes after which they could be approved or subject to additional review.

In the beginning of the meeting, Olympic bantamweight hopeful, 19-year-old David Navarro from Boxing for Christ in San Jacinto, was called forward to receive a certificate of recognition from the council and a monetary donation for his Dec. 7 trip to Lake Charles, Louisiana, where he will compete in the USA Boxing National Tournament. A win will make him a boxing contender in the 2020 Olympics.

Boxing for Christ is helping raise the $4,000 needed for him and his coach to get to the meet in Louisiana.

Tony Ault can be reached by email at tault@reedermedia.com.