March 19, 2004

Mayor Ruth Asmundson and City Council Members
C/o Jim Antonen, City Manager
23 Russell Blvd
Davis, CA 95616

Dear Council members,

At our annual meeting on March 8, Davis Manor Neighborhood Council members voted unanimously to ask that you reverse the Safety Advisory Commission's decision against installing traffic calming undulations on Colgate Drive. Three of the four SAC members based their decision on the data not showing that the street meets the 32 mph critical speed requirement. We ask the City Council to support an exception to this requirement for streets important to school access by parents and students.

Colgate is directly behind Valley Oak School and has an access gate to the back of the school. The data shows an upsurge of car traffic during school drop-off and pick-up hours. In addition neighborhood children are walking and biking to the back gate and crossing with traffic, not just in the crosswalk behind the entrance. This is a street that hosts many children on a daily basis, with the added problems of a lot of parents stopping to load and unload kids.

From the data forwarded to us by city staff, we were particularly concerned that on the two days when the speed data was collected: from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. there were five vehicles traveling over 30 mph, and from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. there were 36 vehicles traveling over 30 mph and 8 traveling over 35 mph. Some over 40 mph. This is dangerous. Eyewitnesses on the street have observed some close calls.

The SAC mentioned the speed data collected for Colgate was not really much different from most other city streets. It is different in that few streets have unpatrolled entrances to schools. We believe that the speed criteria should be reevaluated for all such streets if it allows this many cars to go that fast during times that children are crossing streets, stepping in and out of cars and biking to school, especially when they are utilizing unmonitored back entrances.

On behalf of the members,

Kevin Wolf
Davis Manor Neighborhood Council, President

P.S. We appreciate Public Works' continued rapid response to our requests for improvements to the traffic circle and petition for undulations on Colgate. We regret that we took up so much of their time requesting data. We hope you can find resources for the department so that they can provide traffic data to groups such as ours in spreadsheets so that we could analyze the data on our own. It would save time and help provide more analysis for public decisions.

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