Parkmead Neighborhood Activists Request For Stop Sign Is Denied

Parents of Parkmead Elementary School students have been asking the county to put a stop sign along a dangerous curve on Newell Avenue

Parents and children who live along Newell Avenue show some of the signs they use to try to get drivers to slow down
Parents and children who live along Newell Avenue show some of the signs they use to try to get drivers to slow down
Some Parkmead parents aren't getting the stop sign they wanted on Newell Avenue.

And they may lose a crosswalk, too.

Contra Costa County traffic engineers informed the parents this week that the intersection of Newell and Idlewood Drive does not meet the criteria needed to install a stop sign.

In addition, Senior Civil Engineer Monish Sen told the parents the county may remove the crosswalk that is currently on the blind corner at that intersection.

"Mid-block painted crosswalks can impart a false sense of security and we typically would not put them in unless several criteria are met," Sen wrote in an email to the group. "One of those criteria is that a large volume of pedestrians currently cross at a location, which based on our observations, this crosswalk does not meet."

During the past month, county crews have put in red poles and a stop sign at the nearby intersection of Newell Avenue and Lilac Drive in response to safety concerns.

In early December, a group of Parkmead Elementary School parents went public with their concerns that cars are driven too quickly down Newell Avenue.

They noted the narrow, winding street is sometimes used as a thoroughfare by commuters. In addition, the road becomes crowded with cars when the school day begins and ends at both Parkmead and the nearby Dorris Eaton School.

Le-Lan Jorgensen, one of the leaders of the parents group, said she was disappointed by the county decision but not surprised.

She said her plan is to continue to cross Newell Avenue up the road from Idlewood with her children, holding a red stop sign in her hand.

She added she also plans to park her van along Newell Avenue in an effort to slow down traffic.


mlm2013 January 10, 2014 at 04:44 PM
The County just doesn't care about the safety of residents. At south-bound Cherry Lane and west-bound Treat, the no left turn restriction that has been in place for over 20 is most likely going to be removed this month or next BECAUSE John Muir Medical wants it removed. Residents have raised their voice to Supv Karen Mitchoff, but it appears she has not heard them. It will be interesting to see what she announces at the January 21 Municipal Advisory Council (MAC) meeting. Cherry Lane already carries approx 1000 cars per day - this is a 22 foot wide, no sidewalks & no shoulders lane. The County just doesn't care about what we need in order to live safely on our streets. The traffic studies they conduct are just a bunch of BS - criteria? what criteria? Isn't it enough that residents do not feel safe on their street? Oh don't get me started. If anyone is interested in attended the next MAC meeting, leave a comment and I'll post the info - take care and be safe.
Johnny Jerico January 12, 2014 at 04:51 PM
First--Idlewood Drive doesn't even show up on Google Maps. Why? Because its a driveway. You don't realize how good you have it until you live in metro areas outside WC. The communities along the 680 corridor do an excellent job planning and preventing traffic from commuting or taking shortcuts through residential areas. btw, the plan to change west bound traffic into a bike lane is a joke.


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