The Lafayette City Council finalized the design of proposed sidewalk improvements along Mt. Diablo Boulevard last night, opting to keep U-turns legal at Happy Valley Road and deciding how to separate pedestrians from the Diablo Foods/CVS/Trader Joe’s parking lot.
For some background on the improvements, you can read my story from December here.
The council scrapped plans for pedestrian bulb-outs at Mt. Diablo and Happy Valley Road, which would have required the city to ban U-turns at that intersection. The shopping center’s property and business owners made a compelling case that U-turns were needed to serve as a relief valve when the entrance to the center gets congested, said City Manager Steven Falk.
The council also decided the best way to separate pedestrians walking along Mt. Diablo Boulevard from cars parking at the shopping center was a stone wall covered with ivy.
The original plan called for a wall plus about 18 inches of landscaping, but the property owners worried that would cause drivers to not pull completely into parking spaces, leading to congestion in the parking lot.
Staff also presented other options, including a metal railing or just landscaping, but said those options had either higher construction costs or higher maintenance costs and recommended the wall plus ivy alternative.