Updated: May 2
A serious concern for every large housing development is the traffic it will generate. Traffic
impacts the environment as well as the quality of life of the nearby residents.
The proposed 42 home development on the monastery property, one of the largest in the history of the small city of Sierra Madre will result in an unacceptable level of harm.
The following information is from a traffic study which was sent to the Developer in 2020. MIG, the “independent reviewer” forwarded it to the City. It was included with records obtained pursuant to a Request for Public Records made to the City so we don’t know if it was part of the Draft EIR prepared by Dudek. We do know that MIG, the ostensibly “Independent Reviewer” has been working with the developer to refine their SPECIFIC PLAN and we do not know whether any part of the Draft EIR submitted by Dudek will be revised before it is presented to the people. The numbers disclosed at that time may vary from this study which makes no mention of alternative projects.
Both the traffic study and the elimination of Carter for two way traffic make it clear that
this project will severely impact the quality of life for nearby residents, currently living in quiet residential neighborhoods. The developer has consistently referred to the traffic count as 396. That was in fact close to the number given in this study for February 2020 - but by September that number of trips reached 503, what this report referred to as “approximately normal”
However, by 2025, when the development is expected to be completed and occupied, this study anticipates that the Project will result in weekday traffic on Sunnyside between the site and Fairview of 740 trips a day or an increase of 118% and on weekends 710
The developer has admitted that the number he gave of 396 trips did NOT include any monastery traffic, delivery trucks, lawn and household workers and people using the Park (or to access Bailey Canyon Park)
The traffic, noise and greenhouse gasses emitted by this potential volume of traffic, on a small residential street, will greatly impact both the quality of life and the health of the residents.
These are portions of the Study, which is attached, (the highlighting is not part of the actual study but is added to highlight pertinent portions)
Traffic Conditions with the Proposed Sierra Madre Residential Project
The following documents the expected changes in traffic conditions with the proposed 42-unit residential project (Project) in Sierra Madre, California. The Project is located on the north of Sunnyside Avenue and Fairview Avenue intersection and adjacent to the Mater Dolorosa Retreat Center in the City of Sierra Madre. The Project proposes 42 single-family units on vacant land and is proposed to be built out and occupied in 2025.
Traffic counts were collected for the above intersections and segments in October 2020. Due to the COVID19 pandemic in 2020, travel activity and traffic volumes were potentially atypical throughout the study area and Southern California. Thus, we reviewed multiple data sources in order to select a growth factor applying to existing counts to represent 2020 conditions in a non-COVID environment. The findings from different data sources are listed below
1. LADOT Data LADOT analyzed the loop detector data for 12 intersections from March 10th to April 30th in 2020 and summarized the weekday volume for stages of “stay-at-home” conditions. Based on this study, the daily vehicle volume was reduced by 37% to 58% compared to non-COVID conditions. However, data from other sources suggest that traffic conditions in Spring 2020 were different than October 2020, as many businesses and some schools have returned to at least partial on-site operating conditions.
3. Streetlight Data Streetlight uses smartphones as sensors to measure travel activities on all streets. In this analysis, ADT data was collected from February to September 2020 at the 5 project study roadway segments to track the traffic changes after COVID-19. As shown below, the traffic decreased by approximately 45% in April and then gradually came back to approximately “normal” conditions in September. Table 2-A shows weekday conditions, while Table 2-B shows weekend conditions
These are the numbers for the Segment of Sunnyside between the project site and Fairview
Weekly: Pre Covid in Feb shows 369 trips a day. But by Sept the daily trips were 503
Weekend: Pre Covid in February shows 401 trips a day September shows 809 trips a day
As the COVID-19 pandemic is still affecting regional travel, we applied an upward adjustment of 10% to the October 2020 counts to represent a worst-case condition prior to COVID-19. (That would mean that October 2020 weekday counts (not shown) would be 553 trips per day and weekend counts would be 889 trips per day)
MATER DOLOROSA RETREAT CENTER EVENT TRIPS Mater Dolorosa Retreat Center is adjacent to the Project site in the north and held many weekly and special events before the COVID-19 pandemic. We were provided with 2019 data for the center, which included the date, duration, arrival window, departure window and estimated round trips for each event. We analyzed this information to estimate the average weekday and weekend trips associated with the center. The retreat center generated approximately 69 trips per weekday and 35 trips per weekend day in 2019.
The proposed Project was assumed to be built and occupied by 2025.
The following traffic scenarios were developed and analyzed as part of this study:
• Existing (2020) Pre-COVID Condition
• Build-out (2025) without Project Condition
• Build-out (2025) with Project Condition
Their analysis showed that in 2025 if there was NO PROJECT, that weekday traffic on Sunnyside between the site and Fairview would be 340 trips a day and on weekends 310
Their analysis showed that in 2025 if THE PROJECT WAS BUILT, that weekday traffic on Sunnyside between the site and Fairview would be 740 trips a day or an increase of 118%
and on weekends 710