A new three-way stop sign and raised center median are set to be installed along portions of Danville's Lawrence Road to allay traffic-safety concerns in a residential neighborhood near Diablo Vista Middle School.
The Danville Town Council voted in favor of the twofold proposal during its meeting Tuesday night at the Town Meeting Hall, according to Geoff Gillette, town public information coordinator.
"By installing traffic-calming devices, we better protect the neighborhood and certainly the Diablo Vista students most affected," Danville Mayor Robert Storer said in an email. "This council could not just stand by and remain silent and leave the situation as is, when safety concerns were raised by the neighborhood."
Officials estimate it will cost $62,000 to construct the new additions on the neighborhood collector street, which serves residential subdivisions at its northern end and semi-rural estate properties at the south end.
The 1.6-mile street in southeastern Danville -- with a posted speed limit of 30 mph -- has been on town officials' radar for the last decade-plus, with residents raising concerns about speeding, car wrecks and other driving issues in the neighborhood, according to Nazanin Shakerin, the town's traffic engineer.
A four-way stop sign with crosswalks was added to the Lawrence Road-Casablanca Street intersection in 2007, but a trio of crashes since 2008 still left residents unsettled about the traffic conditions, Shakerin said in his July 15 report to council members.
The council discussed in March the prospect of creating a three-way stop at the intersection of Lawrence Road and Jasmine Way, but sent staff back to the drawing board to develop a more comprehensive traffic-safety plan for the neighborhood.
The updated proposal returned to the council Tuesday night.
It again called for turning the Jasmine Way intersection into a three-way stop. Situated amid a slight curve along Lawrence Road, the junction currently has a stop sign for drivers on Jasmine Way, but no stops for those on Lawrence Road.
The second piece of the updated plan recommended building a raised, three-foot-wide center median on Lawrence Road from Casablanca Street to 80 feet south of Jasmine Way. The new median, according to Shakerin, "would serve to channelize traffic in both directions and minimize the potential for cars to cross over the center line onto the opposing lanes."
The two-pronged proposal received mixed reviews from the 10 citizens who spoke to the council Tuesday night, with six in favor and four against, according to Gillette.
"The southern end of the neighborhood did not want the traffic-calming devices installed, and naturally the neighborhood most affected believed they needed some type of mitigation," Storer said.
In the end, the council was steadfast in its endorsement, voting unanimously to approve the project as presented.