News

A Letter to the Community from Mayor Jessica Sloan

Miller Avenue Streetscape Project

July 6, 2017

A Letter to the Community from Mayor Jessica Sloan

This is a community based-plan, so let's work together to make sure the project is a success!

Dear Mill Valley Community Members,

The paving phase of work on Miller Avenue will begin in the evening of Sunday, July 9. This will mark the biggest, and most disruptive phase of the project.

As you know, road construction is necessary - our pavement, sidewalks, sewers and utilities won't last forever, and on Miller Avenue, most of these public facilities were damaged beyond what any short-term patches could continue to fix. The list of issues was plentiful and includes damaged and degraded roadway and sidewalks, poor accessibility, cracked pavement, leaky sanitary sewers, inadequate drainage facilities to prevent against flooding, and substandard bike lanes and crosswalks. Almost everyone in town has a story of a dangerous encounter in a crosswalk or bike lane, or driving past the regular flooding at the 2 am Club, or almost tripping on a cracked sidewalk. You may not have known this, but below our feet the aged sewer lines presented the very real pollution potential of leaking into the ground water, leading to our local creeks.

Around 10 years ago, members of our community got together to address these issues. Though an open, public process, Miller Avenue was identified by the community and City Council as a high priority for thoughtful redesign and repair, and significant resources were directed to improve this important part of our City's infrastructure.

The project has several goals:

  • To create a dramatically safer thoroughfare for everyone who uses it, from drivers and public transit riders to bicyclists and pedestrians.
  • To enhance the commercial area and make it a beautiful and welcoming place where people will support our local businesses and enjoy the attractive spaces.
  • To protect and enhance the environment - - a cherished part of our small town character.

Now in its 13th month of construction, the project has required patience, and we thank you for your continued cooperation. Some concerns have come up during construction, and I wanted to discuss them, and the City's actions to address them.

In the spirit of this community-based plan, I also suggest some community-based solutions to these concerns.

Parking: Construction has limited parking in some areas while work crews use parking spaces for storage and to conduct the roadway work.

  • Our actions: The City has created temporary, unrestricted parking in the Gateway (east of Valley Circle/Reed near Toy House) and in the Parkway (west of Willow, near Rainbow Montessori). You can park for 4 hours in the City's public lot across the street from Whole Foods, or for 2 hours in the front section of Whole Foods' parking lot. Also, many Miller Avenue businesses have their own private lots and welcome customers to park there. If you are not sure, call ahead and get their recommendation on where to park.
  • What you can do: Plan ahead for your shopping trip to Miller Avenue. Give yourself extra time in case you need to park a block away from your destination. Slow down as you look for parking, as your usual spot may not be available.

Impacts to Businesses - We anticipated businesses in the area would experience interruptions in their regular operations, and that deliveries, utilities, and access for residents, employees and customers would be impacted.

  • Our actions: The City has collaborated with the Mill Valley Chamber of Commerce to implement the MillerUP Business Support Campaign to address and mitigate these issues where possible. The program includes promotions, marketing, events, outreach and discounts. We continue to work with the business community to address their concerns.
  • What you can do: Shop Miller Avenue! Local businesses are a part of what makes Mill Valley special, so please do your part to give them your business as we continue work on this important project.

Damage to Tires - We have received reports about vehicle and tire damage related to the construction work on Miller Avenue. Anyone who has driven on Miller Avenue lately will agree it is a rough road right now.

  • Our actions - The construction site is monitored and swept on a regular basis to control dust and prevent construction-related debris on the roadway. Pot holes continue to be monitored and filled, as needed.

    We are working with the contractor to provide assistance to individuals who have incurred vehicular damage. If you think you have incurred tire damage on Miller Avenue, contact Linn Walsh, Assistant to the City Manager at lwalsh@cityofmillvalley.org.
  • What you can do - Slow down in the construction zone. Be alert to roadway conditions. Drive 15 mph, as posted on Miller Avenue.

We are happy to share that the majority of the paving in the Mainstreet area (Willow to Reed/Valley Circle) will wrap up the last week of July. Starting mid-July, during the day, work crews will prepare for paving in the Passage and Parkway areas (Sunnyside to Willow), and in the Gateway and Marsh areas (Reed/Valley Circle to Almonte). Our goal is to have the majority of the paving of the roadway finished before school starts in the fall.

After the paving is wrapped up, and the landscaping is underway this fall, we will partner with the local Miller Avenue businesses and the Chamber of Commerce to host a big celebration at the conclusion of the project. Stay tuned for more details!

Finally, THANK YOU for having a positive attitude and helping out: Shop Miller Avenue businesses, lace up your hiking boots and walk a block to your destination, and slow down in the construction zone!

Please keep up to date on the project and sign up for weekly updates, and check out the links below for many resources to learn more.

Thank you,

Jessica Sloan

Mayor
City of Mill Valley
Mill Valley City Council

 


 

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Stay informed:

If you have further questions about Miller Avenue, please contact Linn Walsh, Assistant to the City Manager, at lwalsh@cityofmillvalley.org