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LETTER: City’s traffic experiment on Old Auburn Road is insane

A nine-day “road diet” experiment implemented by the City of Citrus Heights has temporarily replaced one lane of Old Auburn Road with a turn lane. // CH Sentinel

Letter submitted by Lisa Blount–
[RE: City closes one lane of Old Auburn Rd for 9-day experiment; Oct. 17th] I know pot may be legal in California now, but not sure who in the city was ingesting it when they came up with the plan to somehow make the road safer by reducing the number of lanes.

The plan to slow down the traffic going westbound might just work in theory because it will create a bottleneck at several intersections, but at times of heavy commute traffic it will just irate drivers more causing some to do unsafe lane maneuvers. Just look down the road towards the east by Wachtel and the west before Sunrise Avenue to find lines of cars jammed up in one lane. I would not feel safe walking or riding a bike right next to that line of frustrated drivers.

This experiment still doesn’t address the east bound side of Old Auburn between Antelope and Fair Oaks where cars fly over “the hill” constantly cutting into lanes to jockey for position.

It is already difficult enough getting out onto Old Auburn from the residential neighborhoods on both sides. Now throw everyone into one lane and back traffic back to the intersections at high commute times and then try to find a way out does not seem to be a way to “improve” the situation.

Honestly, I don’t see anyone using the bike lanes; sidewalks are safer. Why don’t they just start ticketing all the speeders. Maybe the fines and increased insurance premiums will motivate some to drive safer.
Just a thought from a guinea pig ( I mean resident) of this insane experiment.


Reducing Old Auburn Road to one lane is an awful idea
So far, this “Road Diet” test they are conducting is an awful idea. The Sentinel’s article mentions the city would be monitoring this, but I have yet to see anyone out there to observe how bad this has made the traffic flow in this area.

I respect the issues with cars running into the wall at Fair Oaks and Old Auburn, which a simple left-turn-lane modification could solve, but bringing this area down to one lane has so far turned out to be the worst idea I’ve seen from the city (and I’m not alone).

If this becomes a permanent change, I can assure you there will be hundreds of residents demanding it be reverted back, which would cost the City millions and likely get the person in charge fired. Whoever came up with this idea clearly didn’t given much thought to the outcome and even worse isn’t physically visually monitoring the outcome of their failed experiment.
-Wes Ayres, Citrus Heights

Changes on Old Auburn are working fine
The new traffic flow changes are working, however the time frame the light remains green should be shortened for the traffic light on Old Auburn at Fair Oaks. This will avoid a heavy back up for the Fair Oaks direction and allow the right lane to turn.
-Lori Jaquess, Fair Oaks

Temp changes on Old Auburn Road are unsafe
I live on Hanson Ave which is already used as a ‘short-cut’ through to Sunrise – the increased traffic has already made our street unsafe for walking and biking.

We have people that think this is a freeway as it is. Drivers have been clocked at 50+ mph on this quiet residential street. At least 40% of cars using Hanson and Wonder chose not to stop at the 4-way stop sign and we also have at least one moron that thinks its fun to spin donuts in the center of the 4-way stop. The increased traffic that this ‘experiment’ will bring will cause unsafe conditions to the residents of the area.

Currently the residents of Hanson and Wonder are in the process of trying to get the city to install speed bumps to try to slow these people down some.
Lana Crum, Citrus Heights

Why waste money?
Why did the city spend so much time and money on a nine-day temporary experiment? They painted permanent markings and installed flexible lane dividers! Not cheap by no means!

Also, how and when are they observing the effects of this so called “improvement!” Friday, even before it was official, one accident occurred at 3 p.m. They need to be there during rush hours 6:30-10 a.m. and 3-7 p.m. to see the true effect!
-Christopher E. Gonzales, Fair Oaks

Changes don’t increase safety
Are you kidding me with the reallocation of one lane of Old Auburn Road to multi-use pedestrian/bicycle use in the name of safety? Isn’t this right where the planter box is located?

Do you know how many times that planter box has been hit? Someone with a sense of humor keeps putting up a sign noting how many times cars have won (the last time I looked it was up to 20) versus how many times the wall has won ( last count 0).

Does the city want to see that sign changed to cars=20, humans=0? Don’t see how that is helping to increase safety?
-David M. Smith, Citrus Heights

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