Posts Tagged ‘Road Construction’

New Traffic Signals Turned On at Winchester & Williams

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

The new traffic signals at the intersection that have been erected for the last few weeks have been turned on today, and the old traffic lights removed.

The new traffic lights for Williams Road drivers

The new traffic lights for Williams Road drivers

Amy Olay, Senior Civil Engineer with the City of San Jose Department of Transportation, tells the South Winchester News that the new traffic signals will offer a dedicated left turn signal from Williams Road onto Winchester Boulevard. The scope includes upgrade of all traffic signal equipment to current standards.

New traffic signals for Winchester drivers

New traffic signals for Winchester drivers

The new street signage includes street address numbers.

Olay also described changes to the southeast corner. Sidewalk, curb, and gutters will be constructed including necessary drainage improvements. All non signal equipment related work such as the civil improvements are scheduled for completion by end of October 2009.

Community Meeting reveals I-880/I-280/Stevens Creek/Winchester plans

Saturday, July 25th, 2009

Officials with the Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) and the City of San Jose Department of Transportation presented proposed changes to the I-880/I-280/Stevens Creek/Winchester interchanges at a public meeting on July 22.

Margaret Simmons-Cross, Highway Program Manager at the VTA, presented the proposed changes. There are three main focus areas of the changes: The I-880/Stevens Creek Boulevard interchange, the I-280/I-880 interchange, and the I-280/Winchester Boulevard interchange.

I-880 / Stevens Creek Boulevard

Changes to the I-880/Stevens Creek interchange

Changes to the I-880/Stevens Creek interchange

The current configuration of the I-880/Stevens Creek Boulevard interchange is known as a Cloverleaf design. This was a popular design when the interchange was constructed in the 1950s. The chief advantage of cloverleaf designs was that they were free-flowing and didn’t require the use of such devices as traffic signals. A problem with this design is the merging of exiting and entering traffic in the same lane, known as weaving.

The proposed changes to the interchange would turn it into a Diamond design. This would require additional traffic lights on Stevens Creek. A strict Diamond design has no loops, but the I-880/Stevens Creek interchange will retain the loop from Eastbound Stevens Creek to Northbound I-880, making this interchange a hybrid of a Diamond and a Parclo (partial cloverleaf interchange) design.

The Southbound I-880 to Westbound Stevens Creek exit will also feature a dedicated lane for North Monroe Street that bypasses the traffic signal, which will handle the traffic destined for Westfield Valley Fair and other parts northward. VTA found that about 30% of all traffic using this exit was destined for North Monroe Street.

I-280 / I-880

Changes to the I-280 / I-880 connector

Changes to the I-280 / I-880 connector

This new connector will separate the regional traffic that wants to go from I-280 Northbound to I-880 Northbound from the local traffic that is destined for Stevens Creek. In the present design, traffic utilizes the same ramp system to both Stevens Creek and I-880, requiring merging and jockeying for position. Traffic destined for I-880 Northbound will use the new connector, and traffic destined for Stevens Creek will use the existing ramps.

I-280 / Winchester

One proposed design for the I-280 / Winchester exit

One proposed design for the I-280 / Winchester exit

Winchester Boulevard is presently only half-connected to I-280. Traffic can only enter Winchester Boulevard from I-280 in the southbound direction, and traffic from Winchester Boulevard can only enter I-280 in the northbound direction. Designers have produced two different designs for a I-280 northbound exit onto Winchester Boulevard – a five-legged intersection and a hook ramp design.

Both designs connect with Tisch Way just east of Winchester Boulevard. One design would turn Tisch Way into a one way street traveling westbound. The other would be a hook design, adding an additional traffic signal where the ramp meets Tisch Way. Officials have not chosen a design nor is one design favored over the other.

Q & A

After the presentation, Simmons-Cross was joined by Ray L. Salvano, a Senior Engineer with the City of San Jose Department of Transportation.

Margaret Simmons-Cross from the VTA and Ray L. Salvano from the City of San Jose answer resident questions.

Margaret Simmons-Cross from the VTA and Ray L. Salvano from the City of San Jose answer resident questions.

Residents raised two main concerns with the changes.

Residents overwhelmingly supported the I-280 / Winchester design that kept Tisch Way a two-way street. Area residents use Tisch Way and South Monroe Street as an express route to go from South Winchester Boulevard to I-880. This route only has a couple stop signs. The alternative route – traveling north on Winchester and then east on Stevens Creek – has drivers encountering 5 additional traffic lights.

The second concern was the new ramp to Winchester Boulevard would only handle traffic from I-280 east of I-880. This means that traffic from southbound I-880 could not use the same ramp to exit onto Winchester Boulevard. This traffic would need to exit at Stevens Creek Boulevard and navigate along Stevens Creek or along South Monroe Street and Tisch Way.

The project is divided into two tiers. The first tier is the I-880/Stevens Creek and I-280/I-880 improvements, and construction could start in the next 18 to 24 months. The Winchester exit is a tier two project, and construction would be expected to be 10 years away. Total construction cost is expected to be $130 million – $150 million.

A draft environmental impact report will be released in January 2010. Citizens will then be able to write down their comments and there will be additional public meetings before the environmental report is finalized. People with questions can contact the VTA’s Community Outreach Department at (408) 321-7575, visit the web site at, or email at

Public Meeting on I-880/I-280/Stevens Creek Interchange This Wednesday

Sunday, July 19th, 2009

A community meeting to discuss the I880/I280/Stevens Creek Boulevard/Winchester Improvements Project will be held on Wednesday, July 22, 2009 at the Amber Drive School, 3500 Amber Drive, San Jose.

Presented by the Valley Transportation Authority (VTA), San Jose Department of Transportation, and the San Jose Redevelopment Agency, the meeting will begin at 6:15 with a review of the maps and drawings of the proposed changes, followed by presentation and commentary, general Q & A, and drawing specific discussions.

The project proposes to improve traffic flow, safety and access between the Interstate 280 and Interstate 880 freeway corridors near Stevens Creek Boulevard, including modifications to the freeway-to-freeway intersection of State Route 17/I-280/I-880 freeway interchange, as well as the adjacent interchanges at I-880/Stevens Creek Boulevard and I-280/Winchester Boulevard. Of particular interest to South Winchester Boulevard residents will be the new freeway access by constructing a new northbound I-280 off-ramp at Winchester Boulevard.

Proposed changes to I-280/I-880/Stevens Creek Boulevard/Winchester Boulevard

Proposed changes to I-280/I-880/Stevens Creek Boulevard/Winchester Boulevard

Construction is slated to occur from 2011-2013 at a cost of $130 – $150 million.

The meeting is sponsored by the Winchester Neighborhood Action Coalition. Click here for information on the project.