City Gets $190,000 Grant for Old Auburn Rd. Improvements

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG)  |  By Jacqueline Fox
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Old Auburn Road currently cuts a diagonal swath through Citrus Heights and much of the road, according to documents, lacks sidewalks and adequate infrastructure, creating safety hazards for residents, which are being exacerbated by the existence of diagonal intersections at Fair Oaks Blvd, Sunrise Blvd and Mariposa Ave.

CITRUS HEIGHTS, CA (MPG) - The City of Citrus Heights has been awarded a $190,000 grant from Caltrans Complete Streets Program to support the costs of performing significant upgrades to Old Auburn Road.

The Old Auburn Road Complete Streets Plan, according to documentation provided by the city’s Community Services Director, Rhonda Sherman, will address what city documents refer to as “challenging transportation conditions” along a roughly two-mile stretch of Old Auburn Road.

Those conditions include excessive speeds, inadequate bicycle and pedestrian lanes, missing sidewalks and what are being called “skewed” intersections that are reported to be creating safety hazards along the road, which supports some 18,000 vehicles per day.

The city is ponying up $40,000 of its own funds in the form of “Staff Time” to complete the plan, which will launch this spring with an evaluation of existing conditions and the collection of traffic accident data and other “deficiencies” to develop complete streets solutions that aim to mitigate concerns and increase safety for users.

There will be a period of community engagement tied to the plan to help drill down on specific concerns from nearby residents, business owners and others as part of the process of transforming Old Auburn Road into a “Complete Street” as defined by Caltrans, according to the documents.

Old Auburn Road currently cuts a diagonal swath through Citrus Heights and much of the road, according to documents, lacks sidewalks and adequate infrastructure, creating safety hazards for residents, which are being exacerbated by the existence of diagonal intersections at Fair Oaks Blvd, Sunrise Blvd and Mariposa Ave.

Old Auburn Road was identified in the City’s Pedestrian Master Plan as a Focus Area Plan, which essentially means it is within the city’s current transportation network and pedestrian study efforts and open to receive the county funding.  The grant, say the documents, will help the city craft a snapshot of what Old Auburn Road should look like in the future, using a Complete Streets model in the process as well as pay for those improvements.

The city’s Pedestrian Master Plan will be used as a model for extending out a strategy for redevelopment of Old Auburn Road.

“We have a history of using a Complete Streets approach for our roads to ensure that our roadways serve all users including bicyclists, pedestrians, and transit users,” the city documents say.  “This money is the only way we can fund a plan to accommodate these users and plan the future of Old Auburn Road. Ultimately the plan will be community based and translate into future roadway improvements along this important corridor.”