Category Archives: Transportation

What Are Your Thoughts On Downtown Parking

Downtown Riverside Parking Garage EntranceCommunity members, just a quick head’s up about a series of questions the City of Riverside will be posing to residents in the next four weeks regarding parking in the downtown area.

The first question is up and available for feedback here: http://bit.ly/parkingsurvey1

As stated in the explanatory text attached to the question, there will be new questions posted to the site each subsequent Monday – July 4, July 11 and July 18 – leading up to the next community meeting at the Convention Center from 4-5:30 p.m. on July 18.

If you could take the time to forward this email to your members so we can get their feedback, that would be greatly appreciated.

The entire listing of parking-related questions, and other questions about issues in Riverside, can be found here:https://riversideca.mysidewalk.com/

Sign-up for the mySidewalk tool being used to gather feedback is quick and easy.

Any questions about how to sign up, please go here: http://help.mysidewalk.com/hc/en-us/articles/215115307-Do-I-Have-to-Create-an-Account-

Finally, I have included a flyer for the next parking meeting on July 18th if you would like to include that information in one of your upcoming eblasts.

Thank you again for being involved in our civic dialogue.

Best regards

Phil

Phil Pitchford

Communications Officer

City of Riverside

951.826.5975

951.675.6806 (cell)

ppitchford@riversideca.gov

www.riversideca.gov

Quiet Zone Update

Jessica Gordon with the City of Riverside provided this update.

Quiet Zone SignService along the Perris Valley Line (PVL)  began on June 6th, but there are still a few steps that need to take place before a quiet zone can officially be established.  This includes execution of a maintenance agreement between the City and the Southern California Regional Rail Authority (SCRRA) – which is going to be presented to the City Council for consideration on June 21st.  Other steps include verification of all installed improvements, and updating CalTrans’ crossing inventory system.

The Perris Valley Line includes seven crossings within the City – four of which (Mt. Vernon Avenue, Blaine Street, Spruce Street and Marlborough Avenue) are part of the PVL Quiet Zone project.  Current projections indicate that this Quiet Zone should be in effect this Fall.

I hope this answers your question.  Please let me know if you have more questions.

Perris Valley Line For Real This Time

Metrolink

Grand Opening Fares

Metrolink is offering special grand opening fares for 6 months along the 91/Perris Valley Line extension.

·       A $10 promotional Round-Trip fare when traveling within Riverside County

·       A 10% discount on tickets starting at one of the new stations and traveling outside of Riverside County.

·      The 91/Perris Valley Line (91/PV), which will extend Metrolink service on the 91 Line, will begin operations on June 6, 2016. Led by the Riverside County Transportation Commission (RCTC), the 91/PV is the first extension of Metrolink since the Antelope Valley Line was built in 1994.

The extension will continue rail service 24 miles from the Riverside-Downtown station to South Perris, and add new stations at Riverside-Hunter Park/UCR, Moreno Valley/March Field, Perris – Downtown and Perris – South. The extension will provide greater access to Metrolink service for residents throughout the region and in Menifee, Murrieta, Temecula, San Jacinto, Hemet, Lake Elsinore and Wildomar. 

With the extension of the Perris Valley Line, there will be four new stations at Riverside-Hunter Park/UCR, Moreno Valley/March Field, Perris – Downtown and Perris – South. Click on the links below to view detailed station and connecting transit information. 

 

Riverside-Hunter Park/UCR

Moreno Valley/March Field

Perris – Downtown

Perris – South

New Crub Cuts Wheelchair Access

Hats off to the crews working for Public Works. The construction work being done at Mt. Vernon and Big Springs included the wheelchair ramps and  the culvert. We applaud anything that makes it easier for us to get and stay connected in the neighborhood.

The crew working this project was pretty amazing. They managed the work flow to yield minimum disruption, they were organized and they were fast. The results speak for themselves. Thanks for your contribution to a neighborhood of our dreams.

Mt.Vernon Big Springs Crub Cut Project Staging IMG_5684

UNA Metrolink Quiet Zone Update

Perris Valley Metrolink Blind Curve Islander ParkThe following comments are from Anne Mayer, Executive Director of RCTC.

  1. Quiet Zone infrastructure required for implementation was included as a part of the PVL construction package. Each crossing had slightly different requirements but the following is a summary of the types of features(SSM’s) included.  Median curb to prevent vehicles from driving around the gates, additional vehicular gates on either side of the crossing, sidewalks, pedestrian gates, fencing, signing and signals. All associated conduit, wiring, batteries, relays, sensors and other appurtenances are also part of the infrastructure.
  1. The Quiet Zone infrastructure has been constructed and the vehicular crossings are operational. There are pedestrian gates and gate arms that will be installed immediately preceding testing.
  1. The construction work is substantially complete. As a part of the construction contract close out, we prepare “punch lists” detailing work the contractor must complete/repair prior to our acceptance of the contract. They could have minor clean up/repair work in or near those crossings.  None of that work would interfere with final testing or Quiet Zone processing. Testing could lead to subsequent work as well. I understand that the City is also doing some work at various crossings in conjunction with the University Neighborhood Association. I do not know the status of that effort.
  1. All of the independent testing that can be done has been completed. We are at a point now where we must test those crossings in conjunction with the system. We agree that these crossings are a priority and we will begin the final testing at the north end of the project. As I mentioned, the crossings (including new equipment and subsystems) are currently functioning.  The final in-service testing is performed to ensure that all subsystems work in conjunction with each other as designed and all safety concerns are satisfied with the new timing (based on new passenger train speeds).  The final in-service testing requires the movement of trains through each individual crossing and through each group of crossings, to verify controls and indications tests and overall functional tests.
  1. We anticipate that service will start near the end of the year.  Final testing will begin in mid-October and our goal is to obtain all necessary clearances in November so that the City can proceed with the Notice. These locations have been prioritized in the final testing processes. We have been working very closely with Metrolink, BNSF, FRA and PUC for several years to ensure that these crossings are Quiet Zone compliant and eligible. The City has reviewed and approved the design and construction.  This advance collaboration should result in a simplified and streamlined process. We are in close communication with the City to ensure that they have whatever they need from us to implement.

I understand the importance of these quiet zones to the neighborhood. At this time, I don’t see any impediments to implementation however the final testing phase is crucial. It is the final testing that verifies that the system components are functioning under operating conditions which will allow the City to proceed with Quiet Zone implementation. In fact, it is final testing along the entire corridor that will dictate the service start-up date. The goal of all involved is to have the quiet zones operational before service starts however the timing of the approval process is outside of our direct control. Trains will have to run with horns working until such time as the City completes the process. Testing trains will also be required to use horns. I hope this information is helpful and addresses your questions.

We were not able to use boulders at the Poarch Road crossing as chain link fencing was required by the CPUC for 150 feet on either side of the crossing. The crossing itself will be a tubular framed gate that will sit on a rolling gate rail. I’ve attached a draft plan so you can see what it looks like.   This emergency crossing is being constructed to ensure compliance not only with FRA, CPUC, and Metrolink but also with emergency responders requirements. There are a number of specialty safety and emergency access features we are providing at this location and we will likely start testing with interim gates. The final gates installed will be similar to the plan I included. We believe that horns will be required however do not have verification yet on allowances that can or can’t be made at emergency crossings.

Please let me know if you have additional questions

Anne

Metrolink Safety Concerns Raised At UNA Meeting

Several University neighbors raised concerns over the start of Metrolink commuter rail service running through the neighborhood in the next months. Here’s a recap of the concerns form a letter sent to Anne Mayer, Director of RCTC.

​​​​​Hi Anne,

I wanted to update you on several issues that neighborhood residents have raised.

First on the list: UCR is hosting a student group orientation on Tuesday the 22nd. Sargent Seth Morrison wanted to invite Metrolink Safety Program Manager, Martha (Marty) Jimenez from Operation Lifesaver. Could you please make the introduction?

Operation Life SaverMartha made her presentation along with her UCR Grad trainee Ariel Alcon Tapia. Her message would be best suited to the student population climbing the “C” Trail each day.

I asked Ariel, her UCR grad and trainee if he ever hiked the “C” Trail. Of course he had to admit that he had. The presentation fell flat for the neighborhood.

The key issue is a safe crossing. It’s not going to be solved by contracting with LA County Sheriffs for trespassing enforcement. The safety programming necessary as it is, is occurring as inauthentic.

The persistence in resisting tunnels or bridges, is putting RCTC in the unenviable position of appearing callous and guilty of misfeasance when the inevitable student fatality occurs.

Sorority Photo Op On Metrolink TracksI am forwarding a number of photos for you. One of them is a sorority group photo staged on the tracks.

Others point out an issue we’re having with cars driving into Islander Park entering from the Mt.Vernon/Linden crossing.

This is an open invitation to partying and dumping. It’s also an attractive nuisance which will no doubt result in additional drivers getting stuck on the tracks.

Islander Park Drive In Access 2

Drive In Access To Islander Park 3

Dennis McCulloch wants to know what is being contemplated to address his issue.

The seven properties identified in the EIR as requiring sound mitigation have asked when that is going to happen. Other residents have already used the mitigation money offered. These seven are due and want to know if there’s a timeline, a process or someone they should contact. Christopher and Debra Sanchez at 2282 Kentwood
have asked. Please advise.

A suggestion was made about addressing the safety issues of trail crossings by hikers. Dave Roddy is a neighbor and his suggestion was to slow the speed through the neighborhood from Linden to Manfield to 15 mph, about the same as the
current freight train speeds through the neighborhood.

I realize this will immediately bring up a number of reasons why that can’t work. However, in light of no other significant measure in place to successfully address the gaping public safety issue we’re facing, it might be worth considering.

Adding a few extra minutes to the route until we get this resolved is actually the one idea with the greatest chance of making an actual impact on public safety. I doubt the beginning ridership numbers will be significant enough to warrant being overly inconvenienced versus the possibility of a potentially fatal one.

At the very least, it buys us time to continue discussions about a tunnel or bridge. The cost to install either is far under RCTC’s estimates to the Friends Of Riverside’s Hills. To solve this crossing issue, we’re in the low six figures, not the millions as proposed.

In the project plan the crossing at Morton Road was to be gated and closed being accessible only to emergency vehicles. If this is so, what was the reason behind installing full crossing infrastructure? People want to know.

The last item relates to Quiet Zones. We know the City has to apply. What is the process or timeline for this? Do we wait until RCTC signs off as complete? Please tell us how the process works. We know it goes to the PUC. When is the key question in the neighborhood.

As always, I share this in the possibility of shared community benefit.

A vibrant, Badly Eroded C Trail Riverside CAsafe regional trails network starts with Islander Park. The C Trail is the second most popular trail after Mt. Rubidoux. The wear is obvious.

Imagining more crossings not less or none as RCTC insists, is where the majority of community stakeholders are focused..

The Riverside Stem Academy for one, is cut off from accessing the Box Springs Mountains Preserve because they can’t cross the tracks either. Same as the C Trail.

Healthy Riverside County General PlanThe draw to these natural resources has always been present. That was evident from the very first scoping sessions. Now we have significantly larger numbers of the community accessing these resources.

The County’s Healthy Cities Initiative is based on healthy food access and walkable communities.

We’re at a loss at RCTC’s position denying a community access to fulfill a stated health implementation goal.

These issues have already been solved in other Metrolink communities. We are the only residential area on the new Perris Valley line. We feel we should have gotten at least as good a project as in other Metrolink communities.

It is unreasonable to think we can’t come up with a plan to develop the trail heads in Islander Park to function as safe, environmentally sound and effective.

The Metrolink project will alter the fabric of our neighborhood forever. The looming safety and access issues were always key points for us. They are not going away. We think it’s well past time for RCTC to mitigate them in the best interest of the community and the taxpayers.

As always yours for a neighborhood of our dreams,

Gurumantra Khalsa

Chair University Neighborhood Association.