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Castroville Bicycle and Pedestrian Overcrossing Project

For photos of the completed bridge, click here.

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Hang on, it’s coming! 

Top two photos show the construction on May 4, 2018.

On Thursday, May 31, a ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held to celebrate the opening of the bridge. The event will be on the east side of the crossing, the side closest to North Monterey County High School.

In addition to the new bicycle and pedestrian bridge crossing above the railroad tracks, a new bicycle/pedestrian path runs parallel to Hwy 156.

Details: http://www.tamcmonterey.org/ribbon-cutting-ceremony-celebrates-the-opening-of-the-castroville-pedestrian-bicycle-railroad-overcrossing/

Learn more about this infrastructure improvement project below.

Among the many benefits of bicycling are public health benefits. Yet one of the reasons many youth don’t bike or walk to school is lack of safe routes to school—and specifically, good infrastructure.  “A Right to the Road” reported that in 1969, 48% of children biked to school as compared to 2.2% now.

The future safety of Elkhorn Elementary and North Monterey County High School students and others in the vicinity who use active transportation—i.e., biking, walking, skateboarding, or skating—got a boost on December 12, 2016, when the ground was broken for new infrastructure. For background, refer to TAMC’s 1/13/16 press release Castroville Bicycle & Pedestrian Project AKA Castroville Bicycle Path and Railroad Crossing; and learn more on TAMC’s Bicycle & Pedestrian Overcrossing page.

Transportation Agency for Monterey County states that the project “will construct a bicycle and pedestrian bridge crossing over the railroad tracks and a new bicycle/pedestrian path parallel to Highway 156.” It will “connect downtown Castroville to Elkhorn Elementary School and North Monterey County High School. The project also links various portions of the existing multi-modal transportation infrastructure improving access for all bicyclists and pedestrians from the Monterey Peninsula, Salinas to Watsonville, to Santa Cruz County.” See KION’s 12/12/16 story for some additional info; KION reported an anticipated completion date of February 2018. [As pictured above on May 4, 2018, this project is still in construction.]

Gracias to Univision Noticias for tweeting the good news about the overcrossing—“Hoy comenzó el proyecto de una vía de acceso para ciclistas y peatones en Castroville.”
VIDEO: Proyecto en Castroville busca seguridad de ciclistas y peatones: http://noticias.entravision.com/monterey-salinas/2016/12/12/video-proyecto-en-castroville-busca-seguridad-de-ciclistas-y-peatones/

Why Spanish? Castroville is approximately 88% Hispanic/Latino, and many residents speak Spanish. Castroville was founded by Juan Bautista Castro in 1863, fifteen years after the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed—making all of Mexico’s Alta California part of the United States. See Bicycling Monterey’s http://bit.ly/espanolBICI for a chart from the Monterey County Weekly about our county’s demographic make-up, and for lots of bike-related resources in Spanish for Monterey County and elsewhere.

Other media coverage in the progression of this Castroville project (not a comprehensive list): reports by Sara Rubin in the Monterey County Weekly, 1/14/16, here; by MacGregor Eddy in the Salinas  Californian, 1/14/16, “We Could Car Less” column here; and by Jim Johnson and David Royal in the Monterey Herald, 1/20/16, here. Contact the Transportation Agency for Monterey County to learn more about the project.
Tip of the helmet to TAMC’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Facilities Advisory Committee members—including former Supervisorial District 2 representative D. L. Johnson, current District 2 rep Jerry Ramos (pictured at right below), and all others who advocate for North County people who bike, walk, and skate.

Muchas gracias to TAMC staff and the many others working on this project.

Some related info on the Bicycling Monterey website

Castroville Library: A Resource for People Who Bike
http://bit.ly/bikecastroville, which includes tips on biking Castroville and also includes North Monterey County HER Helmet Thursdays spots
http://bit.ly/KidsBikeToSchool, which includes Safe Routes to School info and links

Archived notes

Update: A four- to six-week pile-driving operation related to the Castroville bicycle/pedestrian path and crossing project was scheduled to begin the week of April 10, 2017 but that start date was delayed due to weather conditions. Expect to hear some noise 7:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m, Monday through Friday of pile-driving weeks. The noise will be worth it though, as you’ll read in the post below!

To learn more about the pile driving work, refer to the Transportation Agency for Monterey County’s Facebook post here (does not require logging in to FB). For additional info, please contact the County of Monterey Resource Management Agency Division of Public Works at (831)-755-4925.

 

This post was previously published December 12, 2016, with some subsequent updates.

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