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Meeting Summary - Jan 24th Carmen Bridge Outreach
The Carmen Bridge  meeting last Thursday night went well for the city's first community outreach. There were about 30 +/- attendees - mostly "empty-nesters" and the majority  from the immediate approaches to the bridge.
That said, the group was about ~50/50 for/against or maybe a bit higher in support - which was heartening, given there were few school parents in attendance (understood, since it was a school night).  There were two SCS parents who were very effective speakers in stating their case for the bridge and clarifying misconceptions - and effectively parried nay-sayers' "facts" or fears.   

There were also a number of OF's (rhymes with tarts) who were stridently for the bridge idea - including a number of long-time residents on the North side of Stevens Creek Boulevard -  they thought it was a great idea. And they too effectively rebutted the "nay-sayer" points. So, by the end of the meeting, the strong emotions calmed down and everyone got to know their neighbors a little better.
To summarize, the immediate neighbors opposed are concerned about privacy and safety - as it relates to people walking and biking on Carmen itself - which is understandable.  David Stillman and the city staff surely collected some useful input from all of the attendees

The school district's data show that ~100 Stevens Creek School and , ~500 Kennedy Middle/Monta Vista High students would benefit from this bridge.  It is a lynch-pin of the city's Bike Boulevard network in the Blackberry Farms neighborhood.  Other users include  park-to-park route users and leisure walkers who would have their neighborhoods reconnected.  This bridge could really help the congestion issues around Kennedy/Monta Vista/SCS when school opens and lets out each day.   Walk--Bike Cupertino has requested the city to capture vehicle counts on SCB, as it is very busy with commuters bypassing and getting back on to the 280/85 in addition to the normal traffic loads. 

The Carmen Road Bridge Master schedule calls for the feasibility study to go to the city council around July of this year.

For those of you who were able to make last week's meeting - thank you...You made a difference!  For the rest of the community who signed last year's petition of support, (~175 of you), we will have more work to do this Spring as the study takes shape.  Your help will be needed to show the community's support to the city council along with the need and importance for this neighborhood amenity.  

Thank you for your efforts to make it "Safe and Easy to Bike and Walk" in Cupertino!


Thursday, January 24, 2019 | 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Monta Vista Recreation Center, Multi-Purpose Room | 22601 Voss Ave, Cupertino

To all Stevens Creek/Blackberry neighborhood parents, students and residents:
As part of the evaluation process, the city will be conducting the first of three neighborhood outreach meetings  to get your input and share ideas regarding the features of this proposed bike/ped bridge.  Please mark your calendars and try to attend.  This  neighborhood amenity will benefit:

> 500 students (Stevens Creek, Kennedy Middle and Monta Vista High),   provide  a 

Key link for the Safe Routes to School and  the Monta Vista Bike Boulevard route;

Benefit Neighborhood recreational pedestrians users

Connect  the two Inspiration Heights neighborhoods across the busy SCB with thousands of daily car trips; provide a 
Safe Crossing over the SCB where none exists for over 1/2 mile.
Connect Varian Park with Blackberry Farms

Thank you for your support of this great project and please  pass the invite on to your community friends who are interest in more information.  Remember: bike and ped trails improve safety, property values and community wellness!

Below is the event flyer and a write-up of the project and the latest timeline of the evaluation phase.


The purpose of the Carmen Rd Bridge study is to identify the feasibility of a grade-separated pedestrian and bicycle connection across Stevens Creek Blvd at Carmen Rd.  This would include identification of opportunities and constraints, potentially suitable bridge structure types and foundations, planning-level cost estimates, and a summary of the community outreach effort throughout the process.
Please see below for a simplified project schedule.  I've also attached the flyer that I just created for the upcoming meeting if you'd like to use it for your notifications.
Project Kickoff:                                             November 2018
Data Collection and Analysis:                     November 2018 to December 2018
Community Outreach & Engagement:        November 2018 to April 2019
                                                                  November 2018 to January 2019 
(online survey)
                                                                        January 2019 (public meeting)
                                                                         April 2019 (public meeting)
Preliminary Engineering:                             January 2019 to April 2019

Feasibility Study Report:                              April 2019 to July 2019
                                                                           May 2019 (draft report)
                                                                           June 2019 (final report)
                                                                           June 2019 (BPC meeting)
                                                                           July 2019 (Council meeting)
Jennifer Chu
Associate Civil Engineer
Public Works
(408) 777-3237

Carmen Road Pedestrian Bridge Updates & Diary

Carmen Road Pedestrian Bridge Survey    

This week, the City of Cupertino has published a community survey on  Next Door  to solicit local citizen feedback for the proposed  Carmen Road Bridge project.  The city has engaged a planning group to perform a project assessment. Please see the announcement and survey link below. Your opinion matters, so   Please take a moment and  complete it!

New Survey: Carmen Road Bridge  

The City of Cupertino invites you to share your thoughts on the creation of a new pedestrian and bicycle bridge across Stevens Creek Boulevard at Carmen Road.

The Carmen Road Pedestrian/Bicycle Bridge, identified as a priority project in the 2016 Cupertino Bicycle Transportation Plan, is a grade-separated structure envisioned to provide a vital connection for pedestrians and bicyclists for the neighborhoods north and south of Stevens Creek Blvd between Foothill Boulevard and Phar Lap Drive.

The bridge, which would continue the existing alignment of Carmen Road across Stevens Creek Boulevard, would allow easy and safe access to and from residences, schools, parks and recreation centers, as well as create a Safe Routes to School gateway for Stevens Creek Elementary School. 

Please take this brief survey to tell us your ideas, comments, and questions about this possible crossing. Responses will be accepted until Monday, January 28, 2019. All feedback will be taken into consideration for this feasibility study.  rmen Road across Stevens Creek Boulevard, would allow easy and safe access to and from residences, schools, parks and recreation centers, as well as create a Safe Routes to School gateway for Stevens Creek Elementary School. 

Please take this brief survey to tell us your ideas, comments, and questions about this possible crossing. Responses will be accepted until Monday, January 28, 2019. All feedback will be taken into consideration for this feasibility study.

Take the survey at

Carmen Road Pedestrian Bridge  Update s & Diary
(posted May 2018)

Good Morning -
At last Tuesday's evening meeting, the Cupertino City council unanimously approved the funding study for the Carmen Bridge project!  This is all good news for moving the project to the next step and thank you for writing the council with your support.  Some additional meeting feedback:
Interestingly, two members of the council brought up the issues of who would really use the bridge at the Carmen location and what the general level of community support exists.  This questioning tells me that we can do a better job preparing the council for these issues, as they really aren't that familiar with the topology of the neighborhoods and the school commute patterns.   We could have reminded them that our team submitted a petition of 170 signatures in support of the idea!

Councilman Rod Sinks also questioned whether the crossing ought to be at the bottom of SCB, near the bridge under/over the creek.  He likes the idea of having a path that goes from Blackberry Farms/SCB along the creek to Varian Park and that it may serve a greater number of community members, particularly KMS and MVHS students from the SCS area and in connecting the parks.   (FYI, there is a set-back along the creek from Crescent Court down to the be bridge at the base of SCB). 
Public Works Director Timm Borden will look at this route as part of the study, but wasn't optimistic as access to/from this potential route is quite limited.  Byron Rovegno and I have walked it and I don't know how that route could work, so we'll let the city do its research.  You can view the meeting on the city channel or via the city's website.
Another aspect of this project is the wide (and wild) variations in the cost estimates -  from $500K to $10M in the latest city pedestrian plan documents.  The  latter number is a "planning placeholder" number and not really based on any reality - that will be better determined as a result of the study. Director Borden indicated that it will take ~ 9 months to complete the study. 
Again, thanks for your help and support and there will likely be more work ahead later in the year in gaining more support for this project.
Best to you,

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Byron Rovegno at He is the chair of the Carmen Bridge Support Committee, a long-time resident of the SCS and Monta Vista neighborhoods and can answer any further questions that you might have. Please cc: Byron or let him know that you've responded to council - so that we have an indication of response.

Thank You!  For your support and initiative to make your neighborhood a better place for you and your family to live.

To improve the support for this project, forward this on to your friends and have them sign up at this link 

Here are links for Safe Routes to School maps for MVHS and 

You can contact your city council and staff at these email addresses:,,,,,,,

Carmen Project re-cap from June 2017:

The Carmen Bridge Task Force of 15 of your neighbors presented the 
evaluation petition to the Cupertino City Council on June 6th. Led and presented by Task Force leaders Jian He, Carol Lim, her middle school daughter, and Gerhard Eschelbeck, they eloquently spoke about the dangers of not having a convenient or safe crossing of Stevens Creek Blvd for their children walking/biking to school. 

The petition was signed by nearly 170 residents in the immediate Scenic, Carmen/Cupertino Road and Stevens Creek School area. While the council was aware of the initiative, the concept and specific area issues were well explained and understood by the council and city staff at the meeting. The council has been listening to you - they, too, want to make Cupertino safer and healthier for its residents and school children.

This year and next the city staff will be quite busy implementing several important phases of the Cupertino Master Bike Plan. It was suggested by Mayor Vaidhyanathan and City Manager Brandt that the study might be incorporated this year into the Master Pedestrian Plan - currently in development. Either way, we anticipate that the evaluation can be performed during the next fiscal year.

While the idea has very broad support from the immediate neighborhoods, there have been concerns and even objections from some residents - which are to be expected. Primary concerns focused on neighborhood safety, privacy and cost. The community will have the next year or two to understand the different scopes of a potential bridge and its impact.

We know that trails and bike routes improve safety, security and health of our residents. For example, the city (per the SC Sheriff) hasn't sustained any crime incidents at the Scenic Circle access to Blackberry Farms since it was opened many years ago.

We should also be reminded about the terrible traffic at our school sites:
  •  The K-5 Stevens Creek School student population in the Scenic neighborhood is ~130... or 260 car trips per day to Vista Knoll or Starling Drive. Likewise, the nearly
  •  350 middle and high-schoolers from the SCS neighborhood create ~700 car trips/day on Orange/McClellan/Linda Vista Dr. to KMS and MVHS. More bike/ped use will help decrease car congestion in those neighborhoods!

Walk-Bike Cupertino and the Scenic/SCS neighbors in support of the Carmen Pedestrian Bridge project  understand that bike routes improve personal and neighborhood safety, health and connect the community for students  - plus  it's easier to get to know your neighbors when you're walking and not in your car! 

Walk-Bike Cupertino thanks you for your support of this great idea and will keep you updated as the project progresses throughout the next city fiscal year.

All the best to you,
Larry Dean

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