Construction begins at a busy intersection on Mt. Hermon Road

Granite Construction this week began the long-awaited $758,000 facelift at the intersection of Mt. Hermon Road, Scotts Valley Drive and Whispering Pines Drive.
Approved by the Scotts Valley City Council last spring, the work was scheduled to begin in October, but was delayed until Feb. 12.
“We didn’t want to start and have it rain all the time,” said Jessica Kahn, a city civil engineer, adding, that they had no idea that it would be an extremely dry year.
The Regional Transportation Improvement Program will fund $346,000 of the project, with the remainder being paid with city developer impact fees.
Currently, the intersection, one of the busiest in Scotts Valley, comes to a crawl during peak hours, especially for traffic turning left at Whispering Pines Drive. Improvements will also benefit pedestrian safety for the hundreds of school children from Scotts Valley Middle School who cross the intersection daily.
Work is scheduled to wrap up April 30.
The first phase of the project has the crews ripping up the concrete on all four corners of the intersection and putting new electrical infrastructure. A new audible pedestrian safety component will also be installed. Work is scheduled to take three weeks.
Next, workers will remove the existing median at the left turn off of Mt. Hermon Road onto Whispering Pines Drive. The work will take about a week, but the pavement will remain rough until the slurry seal is put on the intersection.
Repaving the intersection will take about three weeks from 6-11 p.m. each day.
Upon its conclusion, the project will include:

  • Double the length of the left turn lane from northbound Mt. Hermon Road to eastbound Whispering Pines Drive
  • Modify existing signals
  • Improve pedestrian and bicycle safety.
  • Green bike boxes. A bike box is a designated area at the head of a traffic lane at a signalized intersection that provides bicyclists with a safe and visible way to get ahead of queuing traffic during the red signal phase.
  • Rectangular rapid-flashing beacons southbound to enhance awareness of pedestrians crossing free flow right turn.
  • Larger areas for those on foot to stand while waiting for signal change.
  • Accessible pedestrian signals that include audible, vibrating push buttons.
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