About a year ago, I participated in one of the workshops for revising the Sonoma County Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan. I, along with many other participants, suggested numerous changes to existing bike routes, as well as comments on proposed routes and paths. My daily commute involves three crossings of major feeder streets and changes to two of those, Wright Road, and Stony Point Road, can’t come quickly enough for me. Since the Joe Rodota/West County Trail parallels CA Route 12, drivers are eager to get off and on the highway, but aren’t necessarily paying attention to bicycles and pedestrians. At Wright, there are two lanes with a signal arrow turning from Sebastopol Road (another heavily traveled street) toward the highway; without a “no right on red,” they keep turning even when the bike/ped crossing light is green. At Stony Point, a right hand freeway on-ramp isn’t signalized, so drivers speed through even when the through lanes are stopped and the ped/bike crossing light is green.

I am moderately pessimistic about safer conditions if the intersections are changed — the basic problem is inattentiveness. I have recently changed my commute times, so the volume of traffic at all intersections is considerably lower (and therefore safer), but I don’t know how to wake up the drivers.

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