CSD Hears Traffic Study Findings at January Board Meeting

By Bryan Harrison - posted January 24, 2018

Motorists and pedestrians, alike, may have noticed the measuring devises strategically placed on various roads around town toward the middle to end of December.

Following extensive public discussion, as well as social meeting chatter, on the increasing dangers brought about by a greater degree of traffic on the roads, as well as concerns over the ability to enforce particular speeds, MH General Manager, Ed Pattison, quickly commissioned the traffic flow study.

On-hand to report results from the brief but thorough examination at the January 10, 2018 CSD Board Meeting was traffic expert Christopher Thnay, Sr. Project Manager at Stantec. Mr. Thnay, who conducted the study himself, including sitting out at numerous stations and watching the traffic flow at different hours of the day, gave an in-depth report for the board members present to digest. His report included data from his findings, as well as several key recommended solutions.

“Now that Mountain House is growing we’re facing a lot of the same issues other cities have,” Thnay stated.

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Thnay’s presentation included numerous findings from seven key traffic spots in town. He did a 72 hour study of the following areas: W. Arnaudo between DeAnza Blvd and Providence St.; Central Parkway b/t Heritage and Legacy; Main St. b/t Puente and Aldea Dr.; DeAnza (on the Questa side) b/t Montibello & Ventura; Mustang Way b/t Vicindad & Central Pkwy; E. Legacy b/t Tradition & S. Providence St.; and S. Escuela Dr. b/t W. Heritage and Puente Dr. South. Thnay also studied specific intersections and did a 24 hour intensive study at six locations.

His findings showed, overall, that “collector/arterial critical speeds” were greater than 44 mph; and areas such as Legacy at Escuela Dr. (near Bethany School) critical speeds were less than 32 mph.

His report stressed the need for what he called “The 3Es: Education, Enforcement & Engineering”. He explained that “the 3E’s are commonly accepted prerequisites for the successful implementation of a traffic-calming program.” He suggested guidelines and Best Practices for educating residents - children as well as adults - on Pedestrian Crossing, rules of the road, etc., including the California Assembly Bill 321 for school zones.

Additionally, Thnay brought suggestions to the District for new traffic control equipment. Short of the full expense of additional traffic signals - beyond those already established to be added according to the Master Plan, he offered up some slightly less costly, and arguably more effective options. Synchronized High-Intensity LEDs Beacons, and Speed Feedback Signs were among his top recommendations.

“We jumped on this after so many communities concerns (were voiced),” Pattison explained. “We wanted to be able to make data-driven decisions,” he added. Staff was directed to work with Stantec to nail down priorities and costs, as well as coordinating with the school district on areas within their sphere of influence.