The plan to convert Petaluma Boulevard from four lanes to two through downtown will finally get underway this month, but break by November 1 in order to not interfere with the holiday shopping season.
The so-called “road-diet” was set to start earlier this year, but was delayed after the contractor, Ghilotti Bros., had a problem obtaining the necessary materials on time. That means the project, aimed at improving traffic flow through between East Washington and D Street, will now be broken up into two phases, although the delay will not cost the city additional money.
In the first phase, workers will replace pedestrian ramps, add motorcycle parking and restriping, which will reduce the total lanes, but add a central turnout lane. They will then stop for the holiday shopping season, as promised to downtown merchants.
“We will let the Downtown Business Association and others know of any schedule changes and we are very aware of their sensitivity to the holiday season,” said Larry Zimmer, Capital Improvements Manager for the city.
Come spring, the project will resume and include electric work, placing of new signal poles and mast arms. It is estimated to be completed by June 2013.