It’s a short deadline, but San Benito County residents, especially those living in Hollister, have an opportunity to comment by email about the city’s efforts to make West Hollister more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly.
Emails addressed about the walk-able city project can be sent in to [email protected] until Wednesday, Dec. 28. According to Mary Paxton with the City of Hollister, community support could help get the project started sooner.
The City of Hollister just announced it received a $1,078,000 Active Transportation Program grant through the California Transportation Commission, meaning the city is now eligible to compete for Greenhouse Gas Reduction Funds through the California Transportation Commission. The funds could speed-up the funding to construct the city’s plans for improved bicycle and pedestrian access.
If successful, it could advance the project construction to 2018 instead of 2020-2021.
Paxton explained in an email to BenitoLink, “The community can support this application by emailing your pledge of support for the ‘Safe Connections and Complete Streets for West Hollister’ grant application to [email protected].”
Petitions in support of the project are available at the Hollister Finance Payment Center at 327 Fifth St., Hollister City Hall at 375 Fifth St., Community Food Bank of San Benito County at 1133 San Felipe Rd. in Hollister, True Value Hardware at 1260 Fourth St.
Comments related to improved health and ease in mobility for residents in the affected neighborhoods are viewed as helpful to the ambitious city project.
The plan’s intent is to:
- Make walking and bicycling an easy transportation and exercise option for residents and workers in west Hollister.
- Improve air quality, helping residents in west Hollister who suffer from asthma.
- Making exercise routine, which helps combat high rates of obesity.
- Improve safety and help stop speeding in west Hollister.
- Improve access to medical services and healthy foods on Fourth Street in an economically disadvantaged area of Hollister
- Transform Fourth Street to a pedestrian-friendly street in the commercial hub of west Hollister and fulfill the vision for mixed use, sustainable infill development.
The project, scheduled for construction in the fiscal year 2020-2021, will transform Fourth Street between Westside Boulevard and Graf Road from its existing highway design to a pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly roadway.
Project highlights include:
- Adding high visibility crosswalks and curb extensions to shorten crossing distances for pedestrians at several intersections along Fourth Street and near Calaveras Elementary School
- Filling sidewalk gaps along Fourth Street
- Incorporating on-street parking
- Addressing gaps to existing bike lanes along Fourth Street
- Adding bike lanes on Central Avenue and Third Street with a connection to Fourth Street from Bridgevale and Bridge Road
Paxton credited Councilwoman Mickie Solorio Luna with contributing to the project by hosting several community meetings in District 2, where the project is located.
For more information on what is being called the West Gateway Project, contact Paxton by phone at (831) 636-4316, extension 16 or email at [email protected].