The City/County Association of Governments has released its San Mateo County Comprehensive Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan 2021, identifying five high-priority projects across Pacifica, the Midcoast and Half Moon Bay totaling more than 14 miles of bike and pedestrian improvements. The estimated cost is $16.5 million.
C/CAG, which is a joint powers authority uniting jurisdictions in San Mateo County, spearheaded the plan to update its 2011 recommendations for cities and the county. The idea is to bolster safe bike and pedestrian access, connect key corridors, improve mobility and identify funding for transportation projects. C/CAG, which is not part of the county government, plans to provide funding for many of the projects, C/CAG Transportation Programs Specialist Mikaela Hiatt wrote in an email to the Tribune.
The draft plan, released late last month, closely mirrors other plans in the works from the County’s Sustainability Office and the Office of Planning and Building, which have each released their Active Transportation and Connect the Coastside plans. Hiatt said the groups worked together to align their recommendations in the hopes that cities and the county could more easily secure external grant funding for priority projects.
“C/CAG worked closely with the county Office of Sustainability and the Office of Planning and Building to ensure that the recommendations made in those plans were reflected in the C/CAG Plan,” Hiatt wrote.
In Pacifica, the recommendations total 13 projects of more than 8 miles of bike and pedestrian improvements estimated to cost $5.4 million. The Coastside’s nine projects would cost an estimated $25.9 million for 33 miles of work.
One recommendation that C/CAG is pursuing alongside local cities and jurisdictions is “micromobility” such as bike and scooter share programs. Hiatt said C/CAG plans to bring on a consultant to consider in which parts of the county, including the Coastside and Pacifica, those programs could work.
C/CAG is also working with the county Office of Education to identify streets that see the highest number of collisions, particularly near schools, Hiatt wrote. Later this year, C/CAG plans to issue a call for projects and encourages local jurisdictions to use the plan as guidance to apply for grant funding for those identified as being a priority.
Although the draft doesn’t secure or identify specific funding for each project, it provides a cost analysis and lists some local grant opportunities, which Hiatt said can bolster grant applications.
“Though this document does not directly identify or secure funding for projects, it does include a cost-benefit analysis for each project along the Countywide Backbone Network ... for cities to reference as they apply to grants,” Hiatt wrote. “The plan also includes a list of available grants throughout the region, state, and country for cities who are looking to secure funding for their bicycle and pedestrian projects.”
The highest priority projects include upgrades to pedestrian paths along Sharp Park Road in Pacifica. On the Coastside, the plan calls for a new Class IV separated bike lane on Highway 92 for the first half-mile out of Half Moon Bay, a Class III bike lane all the way to the Skyline Boulevard intersection. It also suggests a Class II bike lane from Mirada Road north.
Hiatt said projects were ranked based on factors like how they will contribute to the mobility network along key arteries in the county called the Countywide Backbone Network, which includes the Highway 1 and 92 corridors. Other factors include how they will make traveling by bike and foot safer, in addition to schools, existing transit, and equity considerations.
None of the high-benefit projects identified on the Coastside or in Pacifica were classified as “low cost.”
The plan also identifies regions of focus for improving pedestrian facilities more generally, calling out the northwestern part of the city of Half Moon Bay, most of El Granada, the Miramar shoreline and Pillar Point Harbor. It also includes the neighborhoods of Linda Mar and Fairway Park in Pacifica. The eastern side of Highway 1 was identified as a priority for equity, as was most of northern Pacifica, Linda Mar and the areas bordering San Pedro Valley County Park.