Starting his ride on Pruneridge Avenue, John Hull cycles around town about ten miles on Sunday mornings when the traffic is light.
“You can go farther than walking,” says Hull’s wife, Elfriede, whose own bicycle has been in the garage with flat tires for a couple years.
Santa Clara bicyclists and motorists should be alert to new traffic lane changes that may at first be confusing to drivers. According to Project Manager Benison Tran in the city’s Traffic Division, short stretches of two different streets are being changed from two lanes in each direction to one lane in each direction with a double left turn lane in the center of the street. Bicycle lanes will be on both sides of the street, and curb parking will be as before—on both sides of the street.
These bicycle lane improvements are along existing bike routes in two locations. One location is along Pruneridge Avenue between Pomeroy Avenue and Lawrence Expressway, and then eventually across Lawrence to Tantau Avenue in Cupertino. The second improvement is along Monroe Street between Scott Boulevard and San Tomas Expressway.
The improvements are for the safety of bicyclists. In 2005, the Santa Clara Weekly reported 32 bicycle accidents in Santa Clara with 22 injuries for the ten months from October 2004 through July 2005. Police Lt. Matt Hogan reports that in 2009, 41 bicycle collisions were investigated with 34 injuries, including 4 hit and run cases. In 2010, 49 collisions were investigated with 45 injuries, including 2 hit and run cases.
The bicycle lane improvements are funded through California’s Transportation Development Act (TDA), Bicycle Expenditure Program. TDA local transportation funds are derived from the general statewide sales tax. State transportation assistance comes from the sales tax on gasoline and diesel fuel.