CARLSBAD — The city of Carlsbad was recently awarded with $1.25 million from the San Diego Association of Governments for its regional Active Transportation Grants.
The program consists of the four categories of capital projects, plans, bike racks, and a combination group of encouragement, education and outreach. Carlsbad obtained funding in each category being the only jurisdiction to do so.
Staff announced that its local taxpayer funds of $600,000 have been added to the $1.25 million. This balance boost to $1.85 million will help the city improve the safety of its streets and connectivity for pedestrians, motorists, and bicyclists.
Its largest grant, for $800,000, will be applied to build a roundabout at the intersection of Carlsbad and State Street.
“A roundabout at State Street and Carlsbad Boulevard is part of a project to improve the safety and accessibility of the intersection, where the two roads join at an acute angle; in its current configuration, motorists entering Carlsbad Boulevard are prohibited from turning south onto the boulevard, and motorists going north on the boulevard can’t make a right onto State Street,” said Bryan Jones, Carlsbad deputy director of Transportation. He continued, “A roundabout will improve the intersection by reducing the two northbound lanes on Carlsbad Boulevard to one, and will allow motorists to make all possible traffic movements at the intersection — it will also make it easier for southbound motorists to turn left onto State Street from Carlsbad Boulevard.”
The cost of this project is estimated at $1.3 million. While the grant will cover $800,000 the city will pay the remainder.
Kristina Ray, communications manager for the city of Carlsbad said they were thrilled with the grant monies.
“These projects really support the community’s vision for the future of Carlsbad by making it easier and safer to get around town,” she said. “Transportation projects like these also have a positive effect on local businesses and help support our community character.”
According to Jones, this past February, the concept of a roundabout in this locale was presented to the city council. The plans, he said, also highlighted a trail, bike lanes, and a sidewalk across the Buena Vista Lagoon.
The city council directed its staff members to move forward on the further development of the design.
And they did.
“We anticipate taking the 100 percent engineered design plans and specification to city council this upcoming winter to go out for bid,” Jones said. “We anticipate construction to begin in 2013 with completion in 2014.”
Jones wants residents to know that this project is more than just a roundabout. He describes it as the potential in becoming one of the most complete streets in the whole region.
It will boast a 10 feet wide trail alongside the west side of Carlsbad Boulevard across the Buena Vista Lagoon; bike lanes will be created in both directions next to the roadway travel lanes; and, a sidewalk will be built on the east side of Carlsbad Boulevard to connect the cities of Carlsbad and Oceanside.
“This project is truly an example of a livable and complete street designed to connect two cities for people of all ages and abilities,” Jones said. “The livable streets concept embraces the idea that streets should be designed to connect people with the places they need to go, whether they’re driving a car, riding a bicycle, or simply walking.”