4/24/20: City of Oakland Seeks Additional Community Input on Oakland Slow Streets Program, Including Candidate Streets for Next Signage Installation

Posted: April 24th, 2020 3:50 PM

Last Updated: May 8th, 2020 10:49 AM

Oakland Slow Streets program map updated April 24, 2020

Since launching April 11 to swiftly respond to COVID-19 impacts, the program has installed soft closures on nine miles of Oakland streets.

A majority of Oaklanders providing survey feedback support the program thus far, and the City is seeking broader survey participation as the program grows.

Oakland, CA – Today the City is responding to largely-positive community feedback on the Oakland Slow Streets program by sharing approximately 13 additional miles of Slow Streets for community review. Of the 13 miles released today, 4-5 miles will be selected for “soft closures” to be installed with signage, cones and barriers on Friday, May 1. Additional “soft closures” informed by community feedback will be installed on Friday, May 8.

Oaklanders are encouraged to participate in the process three ways:

The program declares a Slow Streets Network of 74 miles of city streets as Closed to Through Traffic. These 74 miles account for nearly 10% of all Oakland streets and are based on all existing and proposed Neighborhood Bike Routes. On April 11 the City piloted “soft closures” on 4.5 miles of that system, using signage, traffic cones and barriers on four street segments. On April 17 the City added an additional 4.6 miles of streets for a total of more than nine miles on eight corridors.

Since the Slow Streets launch, the City has been focusing on ways to make the program more reflective and responsive to the needs of Oaklanders, especially some of Oakland’s most vulnerable residents, including communities of color and seniors, who may be more at risk of health impacts related to COVID-19. Staff have been convening virtual meetings with community advocacy and neighborhood groups, focusing particularly on groups active in East Oakland.

Survey results received thus far, from approximately 200 residents, indicate that 74% of respondents across all Oakland ZIP codes support the program. Staff are now seeking to reach more residents to ensure the feedback is more fully representative of the Oakland community, including East Oakland. We encourage all Oaklanders to take the survey on proposed streets (https://tinyurl.com/nextslowstreets) and the survey to share feedback on the program overall (https://tinyurl.com/oaklandslowstreets). The City will share more detailed findings in the next week.

About the Slow Streets Program:

On April 10th, the City of Oakland launched Oakland Slow Streets, implementing “soft closures” to restrict neighborhood streets to local vehicle traffic including residents, emergency vehicles, and service and delivery vehicles. Our goal is to make neighborhood streets safer to walk and bicycle, creating wider spaces than our current sidewalks allow. On these streets residents can make essential outdoor trips using the roadway while reducing foot traffic at parks and on outdoor trails.

This program is also intended to discourage drivers from using Slow Streets unless necessary to reach a final destination. The City urges all people driving to drive slowly and safely, and reminds drivers to expect to see people walking and biking along ALL streets. Our hospitals are facing unprecedented challenges and don't need any additional patients. This effort does not impact emergency vehicle access.

All Oakland Slow Streets are also displayed on the map below. This map has been updated since our initial launch to remove transit routes, address conflicts with healthcare and emergency service facilities, and remove streets that don’t have any alternative routes. The City is encouraging drivers to avoid these streets unless using them to reach a final destination.

As a clear reminder, Oakland Slow Streets is intended to promote physical distancing of at least 6 feet by creating new low-traffic, low speed streets to allow residents to safely pass one another. Social gatherings on these streets are prohibited. The Alameda County Public Health Department requires that residents wear or bring face masks while engaged in outdoor essential trips. Face masks should be used when outdoors and within 6’ of someone who isn’t in your household. The City of Oakland will continue to monitor CDC guidance on outdoor recreation, transportation, and physical distancing, and will adjust this program as needed.

For additional program information and a larger copy of the map below, please visit: https://www.staging.oaklandca.gov/projects/oakland-slow-streets.

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