The two streets have become the busiest east of Bernal, channeling commuter traffic and motorists heading to Vintage Hills Elementary School, located at the end of Touriga on Concord Street. Just before 8 a.m. on school days, and after school, traffic on Touriga moves bumper-to-bumper as cars, many from Ruby Hill, move between Vineyard Avenue and the school.
Joshua H. Pack, the city's senior transportation engineer, said that on a typical weekday Touriga Drive has about 2,100 vehicles per day. Palomino has a bit more on an average weekday at about 2,300 vehicles per day with the street now a major link between upper Vintage Hills, Vintage Heights and other neighborhoods and Bernal Avenue.
"As for complaints, it typically takes one resident's request to qualify each street for traffic calming consideration and evaluation," Pack said.
He said only one complaint has been made for each street, one regarding Touriga Drive on March 10, 2011, and another regarding Palomino Drive on July 21, 2011. Both requests were made via telephone with the callers asking that speed humps, similar to those installed several years ago on Crellin Drive, be placed on Touriga and Palomino.
Speed limits on both streets are 25 mph with a speed alert sign on Touriga and frequent police patrols on both streets. Even so, vehicles appear to travel faster, especially on Touriga.
Based on requests from residents, 17 streets have been evaluated for potential traffic calming this year, Pack said, with city staff impartially reviewing and ranking each street based on a number of factors, including vehicle speeds and volumes, recent collision history, pedestrian generators such as schools and parks, and adjacent land uses. There are also minimum speeds and volume thresholds to qualify for the program.
"Touriga Drive and Palomino Drive met these thresholds and ranked in the top of these rankings," Pack said. "They are eligible for traffic calming funding this year."
Pack said the purpose of the July 26 meeting will mostly be educational, with both city staff and residents sharing their information and concerns. It's expected that a neighborhood steering committee will be chosen to coordinate future outreach efforts within the neighborhood.
For more information, contact Pack at 931-5667 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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