Avalon to apply for Five Corners project grant funds

Map showing proposed changes to the "Five Corners Project" area. Public record

Project would add two ‘roundabouts’ to Tremont Street at Sumner Avenue and Avalon Canyon Road

The next step in Avalon’s Five Corners pedestrian project is for staff to submit an application for a grant to pay for it. That application is due Sept. 15, according to administrative analyst Jordan Monroe.

The project, for those of you unfamiliar with it, will add two mini-roundabouts, sidewalks and a bike path to a section of Tremont Street where multiple streets converge in nearly the same location.

Monroe said staff will review public input from the online survey, the workshops (including the two held last Thursday. According to Monroe, staff would provide answers to questions clarifying some of the questions raised.

According to Monroe, if the project is fully funded, every dollar Avalon spends will be covered by approximately $8 in grant money.

Monroe said the city would expect to hear by mid-2021 if the grant application was approved.

Monroe said staff was looking forward to starting construction on the off-road work on utilities this winter or next spring.

During last week’s virtual workshops on the project, Public Works Director Bob Greenlaw said construction would start when visitors leave in the fall.

City officials have indicated that if the grant is approved, the project will be built at once, but if the grant is not approved the project will be built in phases.

Last week, during the Aug. 20 workshops, Steve Weinberger of W-Trans (a traffic engineering consulting business) put the estimated cost of the project at $3.7 million.

According to Weinberger’s presentation, the current design of the area—where three intersections are in close proximity—”does not meet any design standards.”

According to Weinberger, there are 38 locations for potential conflicts between cars and cars and 28 potential conflicts between vehicles and pedestrians.

Weinberger said W-Trans separated three intersections into two using the proposed mini-roundabouts. He said there would no landscaping on the roundabouts to allow emergency vehicles to go over the islands.

According to Weinberger, adding the roundabouts reduced potential conflicts to 7 vehicle-vehicle conflicts and 12 vehicle-pedestrian conflicts.

Weinberger said the two circles (the roundabouts) will have the same width all around.

He also said there would be sidewalks along Tremont.

Arrows will be painted on the pavement.

Greenlaw said the city would meet would anyone impacted by the project.

A demonstration of the proposed project was held with cones and marked areas on Wednesday, Aug. 26. A video of the demonstration is available at the city website, on the same page as City Council videos.

What do you think of the Five Corners project? Email ideas to editor@thecatalinaislander.com.

Avalon to apply for Five Corners project grant funds