County Supervisor Unleashes Commuter Traffic –puts Residents, Iron Horse Canal Trail walkers, runners, bikers and WCI Students at risk!

Post date: Oct 05, 2013 3:10:20 AM

Recently, Karen Mitchoff, Supervisor of Contra Costa County District IV, announced her intention to remove the left-turn restriction from westbound Treat Boulevard to southbound Cherry Lane. She is removing this restriction at the behest of the John Muir Medical Center, which is opening a new facility at that intersection. 

Supervisor Mitchoff made this decision arbitrarily without notifying the over 7,000 residents in the area, the Walden District Improvement Association, which serves these residents, the residents along Cherry Lane and Walnut Boulevard, or the parents of children attending Walnut Creek Intermediate School.  Nor did she consult the Contra Costa Centre Metropolitan Advisory Council (MAC), members appointed by the County Supervisors to advise them on land use issues in the unincorporated area around the Contra Costa Centre – Pleasant Hill BART station. In addition, this decision was made  without formally notifying the City of Walnut Creek, which will have to deal with the resulting influx of commuting and cut-through traffic southbound on Walnut Blvd at Ygnacio Valley Road.

The current restriction on westbound Treat was put in place by the County and the City of Walnut Creek over twenty years ago at the urging of residents deluged with commuter traffic utilizing Cherry Lane to avoid the congestion along Treat Blvd.  Recent construction of “infill” residences to the north of Treat Blvd has alarmed residents and parents of school children along Cherry Lane and Walnut Boulevard because of a major increase in traffic volumes and at times, speeding commuters on their way to their destination.

The Supervisor was hard-pressed to provide any basis for her decision when questioned about the traffic and other environmental and safety impacts on the residents of the area, instead citing vague “safety problems” along Treat presented by left hand and U-turns at Jones Road.  However, the backing up of that same traffic along Treat waiting to turn left at Cherry will present a greater safety hazard as it will occur immediately following a sharp curve on Treat.  To address the problem of speeding traffic along a short, straighter section of Cherry, the Supervisor indicated that traffic calming bumps might be employed, a strategy already vetoed by the Fire District. 

In short, Supervisor Mitchoff’s action has demonstrated little, if any, regard for the safety of either the affected residents, recreational users of the Iron Horse Canal Trail, the children attending Walnut Creek Intermediate School or, for that matter, the commuters themselves.

Larry McEwen, Secretary, Walden Walnut Creek

Concerned residents are urged contact:

Supervisor Karen Mitchoff

2151 Salvio Street, Suite R

Concord, CA 94520

Phone: (925) 521-7100

Calvin Knight, President and CEO

John Muir Health Corporate Offices

1400 Treat Blvd. 2nd FL

Walnut Creek, CA, 94597

Phone: 925-947-4449

Walnut Creek Mayor, Cindy Silva

1666  North Main Street

Walnut Creek, CA 94596

Phone: (925) 256-3504

  Ben Drew, Marketing Communications

  John Muir Health Corporate Offices

  1400 Treat Blvd. 2nd FL

  Walnut Creek, CA, 94597

  Phone: 925-947-4449