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City of Chico

City of Chico

Downtown Chico Complete Streets Project

Notice: The Chico City Council’s consideration of the Downtown Chico Complete Streets Project, which was originally scheduled for February 20, 2024, has been moved to the March 5, 2024 meeting. Due to the number of and expected length of other agenda items on February 20th, moving the discussion of the Downtown Complete Streets Project to March 5th will provide adequate time for public comment and Council consideration. The March 5th City Council meeting will begin at 6:00 PM in the Council Chambers located at 421 Main Street.
 
The Downtown Chico Complete Streets Project seeks to improve connectivity in both the North and South Downtown areas for all modes of transportation. The Project will close gaps in bicycle infrastructure by providing a connection between Park Avenue and the upcoming Class I facility being constructed along Esplanade in 2024. The project limits include the Main and Broadway corridors from 1st Street to Humboldt Road and the side streets between Main and Broadway, 3rd Street between Salem Street and Orient Street, and 4th Street between Salem Street and Cypress Street. The City has proposed two alternative street configurations, each offering distinct layout options.
 
Alternative 1 is currently the recommended alternative. However, City staff is seeking input from community members and project stakeholders to decide which combination of alternative and design option best suits the needs of Downtown Chico. On March 5, 2024, the City Council will vote on which alternative and design option to incorporate into the Project.   
 
With direction from City Council, staff will submit a grant application for the proposed Project to the Active Transportation Program (ATP), which is administered by Caltrans Local Assistance and the California Transportation Commission. Grant applications are anticipated to be due June 1, 2024. This program focuses on funding for the enhancement of multi-modal infrastructure, so it is important that the proposed improvements meet this criteria to be awarded. 
Project Alternatives

Project Alternatives

Alternative 1: Class IV Bike Facilities on Main (Recommended Alternative)

 
Alternative 1 proposes installation of a Class IV (bi-directional, separated facility) bike path on the east side of Main Street, and widening sidewalks to improve pedestrian mobility and provide adequate space for future outdoor dining cafes. Notably, it does not allocate a dedicated biking facility on Broadway in order to facilitate on-street parking on both sides of Broadway. However, biking access will be made to Broadway by connections on 2nd, 3rd, and 4th Streets (See Item 3 below), with bike parking facilities intended to be provided at the intersections of Broadway Street and these side streets.
 
Rendering of Alternative 1: Broadway Street Rendering of Alternative 1: Main Street
Broadway Street Rendering Main Street Rendering
 
 

Alternative 2: Class II Protected Bike Lanes on Main and Broadway

 
Alternative 2 proposes Class II protected bike lanes on both Main and Broadway. Additionally, parking would be available on both sides of each street. While this option is less efficient in terms of bicycle connectivity compared to Option 1, it maintains a higher capacity for on-street parking.
Rendering of Alternative 2: Broadway Street Rendering of Alternative 2: Main Street
Broadway Street Rendering Main Street Rendering
 

Bike Lane Protection Design Options

 
For both alternatives, the City is providing a minimum of two bike lane protection design options, depending on availability of space.
 
 
Rendering of Design Option 1
 
Design Option 1:  Landscaped Median
 
Medians would consist of standard curbs, providing landscaping within the raised median. Landscaping would consist of trees and shrubs to create a more welcoming and safer environment. This would add to the maintenance responsibilities of the Public Works – Operations and Maintenance staff, however, in discussions with this department, it is believed that this can be incorporated into existing work programs cost effectively. Alternative 1 is better suited to this option as there is no adjacent on-street parking.  In Alternative 2, which would include parking, visitors would be required walk across a landscaped median to access the sidewalk area.
 
 
 
Rendering of Design Option 2
 
Design Option 2:  Spaced Planter Boxes
 
This scenario would provide physical planters spaced evenly through the corridor.  It will provide some greenery and a physical barrier from the adjacent vehicle drive lanes and/or parking spots. 
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Rendering of Design Option 3
Design Option 3:  Concrete Median with Wrought Iron Fencing
 
This scenario would construct a concrete median with wrought iron fencing that would match the fencing in other downtown locations, such as Children’s Park along Esplanade.  This provides a physical barrier from adjacent vehicle travel lanes, however, lacks landscaping features that typically provide a more welcoming environment.
 

Project Funding

 
With direction from City Council, staff will submit a grant application for the proposed Project to the Active Transportation Program (ATP), which is administered by Caltrans Local Assistance and the California Transportation Commission. Grant applications are anticipated to be due June 1, 2024. This program focuses on funding for the enhancement of multi-modal infrastructure, so it is important that the proposed improvements meet this criteria to be awarded.

Note: There will be an expectation of using local funds for a portion of the project costs as match funds, as well as ineligible items of the grant. This will be provided at the public workshops and City Council meeting as staff refines what those costs are expected to be.

Public Outreach

 
Internal Affairs Committee (IAC) Meeting
On December 4, 2023, the Project went to the IAC. The IAC recommended Alternative 1 as the preferred alternative and that staff should hold public workshops and conduct public surveys to further community engagement strategies before taking the Project to City Council.
 
Stakeholder Group Meetings
The City has met with numerous stakeholder groups throughout the preliminary design of the Project, including Chico State University, the Mechoopda Tribe, BCAG, Chico Velo, and the DCBA.

Outreach Events
Chico Farmer's Market
  • Saturday, January 6, 2024: Downtown Chico Municipal Parking Lot - 7:30 AM to 1:00 PM
  • Wednesday, January 10, 2024: North Valley Plaza Mall Parking Lot - 7:30 AM to 12:00 PM
  • Saturday, January 20, 2024: Downtown Chico Municipal Parking Lot - 7:30 AM to 1:00 PM
  • Wednesday, January 31, 2024: North Valley Plaza Mall Parking Lot - 7:30 AM to 12:00 PM
Community Meetings
  • Thursday, January 11, 2024: City Hall, Conference Room 1 - 5:30PM to 7:00 PM
  • January 29, from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Chapman Elementary School (1071 16th Street) in the Multi-Purpose Room
  • January 30, from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM at Shasta Elementary School (169 Leora Ct) in the Multi-Purpose Room
Public Survey
A survey was held from January 5 to February 2, 2024, to assess current and future transportation behaviors of City of Chico community members who work in or frequent Downtown Chico and gauge their interest in potential infrastructure improvements.
Results from this survey will be available with the agenda for the February 20, 2024 City Council meeting.
 
Press Releases

Project Timeline

 
Overview of project timeline
 
(Click image to expand)
 
Questions/Comments?

Questions/Comments?

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Address: 411 Main Street, Chico, CA 95928
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 3420, Chico, CA 95927-3420
Phone: 530-879-6900