The new design will be reviewed after being installed only one week ago.
A new lane in Mira Mesa has caused quite a stir, with drivers complaining about confusing traffic flow in the busy residential street.
The city of San Diego’s Transportation Department (SDTD) responded to the criticism and apologized to Mira Mesa residents for implementing the new lane design without sufficient warning.
The new lane design was implemented only a week ago. It was more than enough time for residents to decide they did not feel comfortable with the design. The controversial plan replaced the traditional two-lane system where cars drove in opposite directions with a single-lane system with drivers heading in both directions. The city said the single-lane design was supposed to be safer for cyclists.
The lane stretches across four blocks and was based on a dated 2015 traffic study according to SDTD. “We messed up,” Jorge Riveros of the SDTD said to residents during Monday’s virtual meeting. The city has agreed to take a closer look at the area’s cycling and vehicle traffic data. The city did admit that they could have done a better job explaining the new design and rules to drivers and residents. Riveros, a city spokesperson, also revealed that this new design has been in the works since 2013. Riveros also stated that it is possible to return the two-lane system if they find… “that conditions aren’t right for this particular treatment.”
For the new lane design to properly function, drivers are meant to keep to the center lane and veer to the right (into the bike lanes) if a vehicle approaches. Also, if a cyclist is on the road, a driver needs to move over, and the driver needs to fall behind the cyclist. The unpopular lane also served as a test run for other parts of the city. And drivers’ reaction to the single-lane system has been clear; they disapprove. The city tried to help the tense situation by installing road signs over the weekend to explain the new rules to confused drivers.
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