Building the right infrastructure for people: Traffic Calming in Berkeley
There are a number of new quick-build traffic calming improvements sprouting up all over the East Bay. Crossing Dwight Way at California street as a pedestrian or person on a bike was traditionally difficult. It's wasn't terrifying, but the traffic speed and volume made feel like a bit of an adventure to cross. California St is far enough from a traffic signal that might create breaks in the traffic. By the time drivers reach this intersection, they have had a chance to accelerate to faster speeds.
The City of Berkeley has put in temporary traffic improvements as part of Phase 2 of the Dwight Way/California Street project. The City of Berkeley will record data and use this to evaluate whether Phase 3 permanent improvements will be implemented. I hope this will happen.
I rode my bike through the other day to check it out. I noticed that people were driving their cars more slowly due to the narrower lanes. The wider crosswalk and dedicated bike crossings also helped add visibility to the intersection and made it feel more welcoming to people who walk and bike. Especially when walking or biking with kids. It felt much easier to cross and much safer.