File #: 2023-2761   
Type: Consent Calendar Item
Body: Transportation Commission
On agenda: 1/25/2023
Title: Draft Meeting Minutes - October 20, 2022



Draft Meeting Minutes - October 20, 2022




Draft Minutes

Transportation Commission Meeting

Special Meeting

Wednesday, October 20, 2022


Time:                                          6:30 p.m.


Location:                     Pursuant to Assembly Bill 361 codified at Government Code Section 54953, Transportation Commissioners can attend the meeting via teleconference. The City allows public participation via Zoom.


Zoom Attendees: 29


Legistar Link (Agenda and Video):



Facebook Live Video: <>


1.    Roll Call


Present: Chair Soules, Vice Chair Yuen and Commissioners Kohlstrand, Johnson, Suthanthira and Nachtigall.

Absent: Commissioner Scott Weitze


2.    Agenda Changes


Chair Samantha Soules made a motion to pull item 6B Street Classifications from the Regular Agenda for more discussion. Commissioner Rebecca Kohlstrand seconded the motion. A vote was taken by a raise of hands and the motion passed 6-0.


3.    Staff Communications


Lisa Foster, Senior Transportation Coordinator, made several announcements, which are available in detail at:



4.    Announcements / Public Comments


Commissioner Kohlstrand asked for high level summary on the Encinal Avenue resurfacing project.


Staff Member Foster mentioned that it was a Caltrans project and would include a road diet and other improvements.


Chair Soules spoke about the great turnout for Walk and Roll School day.


Jim Strehlow discussed the lack of a bike lane at Sherman St. He discussed the difficulties for bicyclists and drivers at Atlantic and Sherman. He suggested that a roundabout could be a good solution for the Pacific/Central/Main intersection.


5.    Consent Calendar





6.    Regular Agenda Items


6A.                     Review and Comment on the Draft Alameda Active Transportation Plan

(Discussion Item)


Rochelle Wheeler, Senior Transportation Coordinator, introduced this item and gave a presentation. The staff report and attachments can be found at: <>.


Michael Hintze, Toole Design, also presented. 


Commissioner Clarifying Questions and Comments for #6A


Commissioner Geoffrey Johnson discussed getting to attend the Open House at the Library and the comments he heard. He gave suggestions on how the make the map on page 25 “Pedestrians High Injury Corridors” could be clearer, noting that the colors of each tier were difficult to distinguish.


Chair Soules concurred with that suggestion.


Vice Chair Tina Yuen gave notes and comments on the High Injury Corridor and other maps. She gave suggestions on what colors should be used to make the information clearer and adding more detailed captions explaining each map.


Commissioner Kohlstrand thought this was a great plan overall. She discussed her concerns about integrating the Active Transportation Plan and General Plan Street Classifications. She wanted more consideration to what they can accomplish at the “gateways” in Alameda since they are very congested. She pointed out key areas that still needed resolutions, including redundancy of east-west bike routes, suggesting that Lincoln should be reserved for transit. She added that the Street Classification discussion would impact whether Gibbons Drive could be a Neighborhood Greenway in the ATP.


Chair Soules also discussed the importance of modal equity and those highly congested areas, especially at the peak hours.


Commissioner Alysha Nachtigall echoed the comments about the colorization of the maps. She then discussed her concerns about having enough low stress North/South connections for both bicyclists and pedestrians especially with all the new proposed housing.


Commissioner Saravana Suthanthira discussed big picture items (Meeting Video, 1:04) and how those goals could be achieved. She said that being an island has benefits for planning internal connections, but the external connections at the Gateways remain largely auto dependent. She discussed importance of still being able to accommodate automobiles as well to avoid impacts on the neighborhood streets. She was happy to see there would be a subcommittee for the street classifications and that all mode of transportation would be taken into account.


Public Comment for #6A


Denyse Trepanier, Board President for Bike Walk Alameda, expressed thanks to staff and the consultant team. She then discussed a letter the group sent that gave suggestions on neighborhood greenways to include minimum design standards that could avoid lengthy design process, and where low stress bike lanes were still needed and the street classifications.


Travis Morgan thought this was an excellent plan and as a resident of Gibbons he wanted to see it as a neighborhood greenway.


Jim Strehlow discussed citywide improvements he wanted to see addressed in the plan such as where e-bikes would be permitted or not. He thought the plan relied too much on engineering changes and not behavioral education. He said the plan ignores the recommendation to move the Versailles Slow Street and that the Fernside residents have never expressed desire for a two-way protected bike lane. He was against Gibbons becoming a neighborhood greenway because of its importance for local and regional connectivity. He wanted this plan to go back for further study.


Additional Commissioner Comments and Discussions for #6A


Vice Chair Yuen questioned Table 1 “Pedestrian Design Matrix”, she wanted to know how the City was going to use this table. She also asked about increased north/south bike network access, noting the uncertainty over the Grand Street plans with the City Council.


Staff Member Wheeler gave clarification on the table and discussed when this table would be used. She gave examples of projects and how this table would be beneficial. She said staff is proposing a protected facility for Grand Street to be consistent with city policy and the safety and network analysis.


Chair Soules expressed concern about reopening discussion on the Grand Street project, which the Commission has already discussed and made a recommendation on.


Andrew Thomas, Planning Building & Transportation Director, gave a brief description on where the resurfacing project was.


Commissioner Kohlstrand clarified her concerns about the two main streets (1:27), Webster and Park, and how the two streets would accommodate all modes of transportation. She also gave her thoughts on the conditions at Bay Farm and discussed in detail intersections that needed attention. She wanted clarification on who was responsible for the repairs of the paths, the HOAs or the city. She said the second crossing from Bay Farm to South Shore should be low on the priority list. She suggested consideration of Marina and Eastshore as temporary Bay Trail segments instead of Fernside in those locations.


Chair Soules discussed geographical equity (1:31) and how some Bay Farm facilities are way overdue. She wanted to see a prioritization for maintenance and improvements on Bay Farm to increase level of comfort and safety. She was very proud of the amount of capital improvements the city did and acknowledged it was a lot to bring forward in 8 years and wanted to make sure our ambition does not prevent us from doing projects well.


Commissioner Suthanthira agreed about changing the colors on the list. She said she was disheartened to see the low priority for projects on Bay Farm. She then discussed Bay Farm in detail (1:36) and what was needed, highlighting corridors and vulnerable communities that deserved attention. She gave her thoughts on the current conditions and the high stress areas that needed to be prioritized. She also addressed the high level of seniors and importance of considering all mobility levels. She said bike and pedestrian improvements should emphasize access to the two schools, the ferry and park & ride lot. She discussed improvements children needed in order to feel safe and encouraged to bike to school, noting the bumpy path and wooden bridge. She said Class II bike lanes to the ferry were not enough.


Vice Chair Yuen said we should stay aggressive in setting our goals and implementing these projects to improve our transportation system to meet the housing growth Alameda will see in the next eight years. She pushed back on the idea that additional staff resources would not be required to implement the plan and tie back to our greenhouse gas emissions goals. She said Willie Stargell does not feel like a Class III facility due to the high level of stress. She asked for more detail about how a Class III facility could be a low stress facility on the Neighborhood Greenways.


Michael Hintze, Toole Design, explained the thresholds for speed and volumes that must not be exceeded to be an effective Neighborhood Greenway. He said cities that are able to put in the needed traffic calming devices and crossing treatments for busy intersections have had success in attracting users of all ages and abilities.


Staff Member Wheeler added information on bike routes and street classifications for Class III Bike Routes.


Commissioner Kohlstrand asked by the waterfront trail behind Bayview was recommended to remain unpaved.


Staff Member Wheeler explained that the area is a bird sanctuary and that folks enjoy the more natural feel of the area so staff wanted to be clear that even though it is shown as a trail that it is intended to remain unpaved.


Chair Soules appreciated the objective effort at prioritization but wanted more information on evaluating project success in achieving mode shift on intra-island and off-island trips to help gauge effectiveness of investments. She suggested that the different plans could use metrics that apply across the board when it comes time for the annual reporting.


6B.                     Discuss and comment on Street Classification Mobility Element Appendix (Discussion Item)


This item was tabled until a future meeting.


7.    Announcements / Public Comments


Jim Strehlow wanted to know how many people were at this Zoom meeting.


Chair Soules said she has seen between eight and twenty-nine attendees and they would have the minutes reflect the Zoom attendance. She then reminded everyone to be safe and aware of trick or treaters out on Halloween.


8.    Adjournment

Chair Soules adjourned the meeting at 8:40 p.m.