A Letter to the Community from Mayor John McCauley

June 13, 2016

Dear Mill Valley Community Members,

The upcomingconstruction project on Miller Avenue breaks ground this week.

This is amajor project that the community has been planning for over 10 years. This $18million project improves every element of one of the main arteries in and out ofour town, as well as the infrastructure deep under the roadway, such as stormdrains improvements to help with flooding and sewer lateral repairs to protectwater quality. The project is deeply aligned with Mill Valley's unique charm,character, and small town values, reflecting the work of the many committeemembers and residents who participated in the planning and design process.

One of the first steps in the project is the removal of trees from thecentral section of Miller Avenue, what we call “Main Street.” Fifty trees needto be removed from the section of Miller Ave between Willow St. to ReedSt./Valley Circle.

Thetrees being removed have many issues - most of them are stressed by the drought,others are not appropriate trees for this urban setting. They are struggling inpoor soil conditions, and a lot of them are at the end of their lifespan. Thenew streetscape will require some of the medians and crosswalks to be moved, andthe trees that exist in those spots will be removed as well.

38 treeswill be preserved in the Main Street area– many of our beloved Redwood treeswill remain. We have also worked with landscape designers to carefully create areplanting plan that will add 142 new trees in this section of Miller Avenue.When the project is done the total number of trees on “Main Street” willincrease from 88 to 180.

We recognized it is difficult to see trees comedown, but please know that the new trees have been thoughtfully chosen for theirbeauty, color, height, and resiliency to drought and urban conditions. Therenderings above depict the finished landscape for Miller Ave in this area. More on the treeremoval.

This project is projected to take 18 months, so we ask foreveryone’s patience as things progress. Construction is permitted this summerfrom 7:00 am to 7:00 pm to allow the crews to work while school is out ofsession and there is usually less traffic. There will always be at least onelane open in each direction during construction and all businesses access willremain open. The only part of Miller Avenue that goes down to one lane is in the"Passage" section near the Mill Valley Lumber Yard, which was re-painted in2014. All other sections of the road will maintain two lanes of travel in bothdirections (four lanes total). The City has extensive parking plans toaccommodate our parking needs during the project. Look for more communication aswe get to work improving the street.

As you see the construction trucksrolling into town, along with chippers and backhoes, join us in picturing afuture Miller Avenue that we can all be really proud of. A Miller Avenue withsafer bike lanes for our children to ride to school, safer crosswalks, as wellas wider sidewalks and gathering places that are more inviting to use as we doour shopping and errands. We hope you will picture new landscaping and treesthat will beautify the roadway and reflect the character of this important“complete street” that we all use every day.

Please keep up to date onthe project by signingup for weekly updates, and check out the project website at

Thank you,

John McCauley
City of Mill Valley
Mill Valley City Council