City moving forward with new outdoor seating area, bike corral downtown

Amenities replacing parking spaces for the next year in test run on West Angela

Downtown Pleasanton is set to receive two new public amenities in the place of three roadside parking spots, at least in the short term, near the corner of West Angela and Main streets next month.

The Pleasanton City Council last week unanimously approved an estimated $31,850 proposal to temporarily convert two public parking spaces on West Angela Street into a parklet -- an outdoor seating area open to the public -- and change one car-parking spot across the street into a corral for bicycle parking.

The combination pilot program, aimed at addressing community and council interest in more outside seating and bicycle parking downtown, will be in place for at least a year to allow city officials to gauge their effectiveness, according to Gerry Beaudin, the city's community development director.

"We're excited to give both the bike corral and parklet concepts a try in downtown Pleasanton," Beaudin said in an email interview. "City crews are completing all of the preparation and installation work for both projects."

Both amenities could also help increase pedestrian volume, improve accessibility and business activity, and in the case of the bike corral, stretch the limited parking supply by encouraging people to cycle downtown instead of drive, according to Beaudin.

The parklet will take the place of two street parking spots on the north side of West Angela Street, at the northwest corner with Main Street. Open to the public, the fenced-in seating area atop a prefabricated deck will also be a place where Cafe Main could serve food to its customers sitting there.

Those parking spots remain open for the time being, but across West Angela work has already begun on the new bicycle corral to accommodate eight to 16 bikes adjacent to the Peet's Coffee and Tea plaza.

The single parking spot has been closed off on the south side of West Angela at the Main corner, with city crews last week creating the concrete pad on which to mount the new bike racks.

Beaudin said the bike corral is on track to open some time next week while the public parklet won't come on-line until later in July. The prefabricated parklet is due to be delivered the week of July 10, with assembly and installation on-site to follow, he added.

The new corral will be a welcome sight for Vice Mayor Jerry Pentin, an avid cyclist and bicycling advocate.

"For me, having the bike corral -- or possibly more than one -- is an opportunity for our residents to feel comfortable about riding their bikes to our downtown, have a safe visible place to park their bikes and do their shopping or dining," Pentin said by email.

The vice mayor said he hopes the bike corral concept will "start a sea change as to how to get to downtown."

"We're a car-first community and a culture change to a bike/pedestrian community will take time, but starting with a bike corral, again, visible and safe and appropriately placed so it will be used is a great start," he added. "Each bike in the corral or locked up to a bike rack represents a car not in the downtown. That is a good result."

The five council members approved the pilot program with little fanfare during their meeting June 20, endorsing it without discussion as part of their consent calendar -- a collection of items deemed routine and voted upon all at once unless pulled for separate consideration.

The $31,850 pricetag includes the prefabricated parklet, furniture for the parklet, site preparation for the bike corral, the bike racks and painting the bike racks, according to Beaudin. Relevant signage will be made at the city's sign shop.

The parklet and bike corral are scheduled to remain in place through summer 2018, with city staff monitoring how each perform during the year-long trial. Those review efforts could include surveying users, collecting feedback online from residents and polling adjacent businesses, Beaudin said.

If they perform well, city staff could propose making the amenities permanent on West Angela Street after next summer or expanding the program elsewhere downtown.

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21 people like this
Posted by Brian Dunkel
a resident of Kottinger Ranch
on Jun 26, 2017 at 10:41 pm

Am I off track by thinking that maybe it's not safe to put a seating area near a street? I'm usually supportive of ideas to bring the community together and adding amenities to parks, etc., but I think this idea is a little weird. I don't even sit outside at Cafe Main as I've seen way too many misses with distracted drivers, rolling stops, and show offs. I hope I'm wrong, but I wouldn't let my little girl near a parklet.

6 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jun 26, 2017 at 11:07 pm

What's the over / under on whether this is more expensive than the solar panels installed at Shadow Cliffs.

23 people like this
Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Jun 27, 2017 at 7:51 am

Bad idea, our money must be burning holes in the cities pockets! Who's idea was this parklet, maybe cafe main should be picking up the tab on this one since they benefit the most.

Posted by Name hidden
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood

on Jun 27, 2017 at 7:55 am

Due to repeated violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are automatically removed. Why?

27 people like this
Posted by RC
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 27, 2017 at 9:29 am

I doubt the 'drive first' culture will change much since believe it or not there are a lot of people who don't RIDE BIKES! Walking to downtown from our neighborhood isn't going to happen either and what about all of the people who drive in from surrounding areas? Parking on the weekends can be challenging as it is. I don't feel this has been thought through objectively and the advocates of the project are all 'avid cyclists' ugh.... take everyone into consideration, not just one group.

14 people like this
Posted by Mike
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 27, 2017 at 9:40 am

I seldom sit outside because of noise and traffic. Cycling is good, and there should be safe places for the minority to enjoy it. However, I am against the social engineering aspect of this as I sounds like more anti-car agenda. I agree with the comments.

35 people like this
Posted by Jim Van Dyke
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 27, 2017 at 9:53 am

This is a smart move by city leaders, benefiting those who travel by either bike or car. How do you argue with this math: one auto parking space is being converted to allow 8-16 bikes? That means more parking for those who drive, and those who bike! Last week I was having breakfast at Cafe Main and up rolls a family of four on cruiser bikes, looking all around for a place to safely lock up their bikes, and after zig-zagging back and forth they finally settled on a place several businesses away. City of Pleasanton, way to think outside the (3,500 pound, 12' long and five' wide steel) box! We need transportation options, and right now many people I talk with want to bike around town but feel that they cannot do so safely or they only choose a car.

22 people like this
Posted by Suzann
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:15 am

Are you nuts? There isn't enough parking in downtown to begin with and now you're taking another three spots away?
I agree that sitting outside is way too noisy and who knows what traffic hazards will occur. Here's hoping the City has taken into consideration the liability cost that may be associated with this. $31k - there are a lot of other uses for these funds.

14 people like this
Posted by Huh?
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:28 am

Am I reading tnis correctly? This reads as if cafe main diners will be sitting in the "street"? Really?

9 people like this
Posted by Pete
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:37 am

Pleasanton Parent,

Payback on the solar panels is about 27 years and no payback on the bike parking. City and school district are just burning through OUR money.

13 people like this
Posted by Jeremy Walsh, editor
associate editor
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:38 am

Jeremy Walsh, editor is a registered user.

Thanks for asking, Huh? To elaborate, the parklet will be a fenced-in seating area atop a prefabricated deck that will be installed on top of the street-side parking spots.

13 people like this
Posted by dadgummit
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:41 am

RE Pleasanton Parent's comment on the Shadow Cliffs solar panels: That installation allowed the park district to offset it's electric bills across the system, not just that park so it was a good investment, as well as providing shaded parking.
RE the parklet/bike parking: I ride downtown and finding a spot to lock up the bike is not easy, and often blocks pedestrian traffic if you use one of the few sidewalk locking structures, so one parking place mid-downtown seems reasonable. I have some concerns about apparently favoring one business allowing them to serve customers on that public space. If anyone can plop down there with their coffee from wherever, though, I guess it's ok.

28 people like this
Posted by Inge
a resident of Rosepointe
on Jun 27, 2017 at 10:50 am

Thank you, city council! I love sitting outside and am grateful that we will be getting more places to do that! We have some of the most beautiful weather in the country and it's fun to take advantage of that!
And the bike corral will make it easier to lock up my bike (instead of using lamp posts!).
As I'm getting older, I've been considering getting an electric-assist bicycle, which will allow me to take care of many shorter trips by bike instead of always using my car.
I like that we are making our city more pedestrian and bicycle friendly.

16 people like this
Posted by Bill B
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 27, 2017 at 11:14 am

I am excited to see the addition of some place to park bikes downtown. One of the drawbacks to riding downton is the lack of places to safely lock up your bike. Downtown is not overflowing with bike racks. Railings and lamp post's can cause tight squeezes on many sidewalks. This will make it easier for many to leave the car home and ride in for lunch, Farmers Market, and errands. Well done City Council.

17 people like this
Posted by Julie
a resident of Stoneridge
on Jun 27, 2017 at 11:17 am

Trading one parking space for 16 bike spots sure sounds like a no brainer to me!

9 people like this
Posted by Neighbor
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 27, 2017 at 11:17 am

Oh fantastic! Another place for people to sit and smoke. Who is going to patrol this? I rarely sit outside of Pete's anymore due to the defacto smoking area that no one seems to care about. Awesome, give them all a place to sit all day!

19 people like this
Posted by Patricia
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 27, 2017 at 11:50 am

I think this is a great idea! That one space can provide parking for up to 16 bikes. If each car unit is a family of four, that's four fewer parking spaces needed for cars. If each car unit is a couple, that's eight fewer cars coming downtown. Personally, I walk into Farmers' Market with friends, but when they can't go I often drive by my lonesome. So if each car unit is just one person like me, that's up to 16 fewer cars, and only one less parking spot. That's not pro bike and anti car, it's just common sense!

26 people like this
Posted by Spudly
a resident of Laguna Oaks
on Jun 27, 2017 at 11:56 am

Amazing how many problems there are in our first world, rich community.

13 people like this
Posted by Rhubarb
a resident of Carlton Oaks
on Jun 27, 2017 at 12:05 pm

Rhubarb is a registered user.

Thrilled by this plan. I definitely choose to sit outside when I can, and I will also appreciate more places to lock up my and my kids' bikes!

14 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton resident and taxpayer
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 27, 2017 at 12:20 pm

I'm OK with the test pilot of both of these ideas, with one caveat/concern:

I trust the City has either stipulated in writing and/or otherwise to the owner(s) of Cafe Main that that parklet and deck they're building is for EVERYONE's use AT ALL TIMES, and is NOT for the EXCLUSIVE use of Cafe Main's patrons.

I have NO interest in paying for additional outdoor seating for this private business owner's patrons using our tax dollars.

Again, that should be made VERY clear to Cafe Main, lest they take it upon themselves to try to claim this outdoor seating for themselves.

20 people like this
Posted by Bettina Baumgart
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 27, 2017 at 1:04 pm

I particularly love Pleasanton since we have a nice little downtown where you can sit outside, what a great idea. I also have noticed that there are many people on bikes coming for dinner or coffee so it is timely to install a place where you can put your bike without it getting in the way for other pedestrians.
Thank you, City of Pleasanton for making our city better!

15 people like this
Posted by Dasia (Friday Ride Club)
a resident of San Ramon
on Jun 27, 2017 at 1:23 pm

It's great to see improvements to downtown Pleasanton's cycling infrastructure. It's such a great little town, I bike there all the time!

14 people like this
Posted by David Gates
a resident of Mohr Park
on Jun 27, 2017 at 1:25 pm

One of the reasons I like living here is Pleasanton's small town, relaxed feel. Biking aound town and sitting out in the plaza during the Farmers Market are part that. I think the parklet and especially the bike corral are great ideas.

14 people like this
Posted by Black Ave
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Jun 27, 2017 at 2:15 pm

Encouraging those that have the means to ride to Main only helps free up more parking spaces. If that rack encourages even one person to ride downtown that would have otherwise driven, then it has already offset itself in terms of space. For each rider whose bike is locked to that rack, we can thank them for freeing up that many more parking spots.

7 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jun 27, 2017 at 2:42 pm

Yeah. I'm sure boutique stores and any goods retailer is going to love to sell items in an area where no one can transport them home.

Also, granted we have beautiful weather, there is still this pesky thing called winter. Who is biking downtown then.

The purpose should not be to create a downtown that discourages driving. The purpose should be creating a downtown that invites commerce with accommodations for pedestrians, cars, bikes, etc.

I.e. Build a parking garage and bike paths.

19 people like this
Posted by Diana Fisch
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Jun 27, 2017 at 3:10 pm

I am grateful that our city planners see the vision, for a pedestrian , and bike friendly downtown. Pleasanton downtown reflects an old fashioned value, of slowing down,getting out of your car, enjoying the mostly spectacular weather while strolling, visiting and meeting your neighbors. An environment that encourages people to walk or ride to downtown amenities keeps people healthy, and happy.

4 people like this
Posted by Steve
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Jun 27, 2017 at 5:12 pm

I find it stunning that in 2017 people are objecting to bicycle parking. Seriously? Listen, if you're bored, I have some chores you kids can do. Better yet, though, get on a bike.

8 people like this
Posted by Bella
a resident of Alisal Elementary School
on Jun 27, 2017 at 5:20 pm

I like parklets which are all over San Francisco are used. But if we quit blocking sidewalks and managed ever encroaching tables and chairs, and strategically located the trees, benches, garbage cans and planters, plus eliminated commercial A-frame signs, etc. perhaps we could save some money.

Sorry but I have knee issues so I cant ride a bike but even if I could i would not risk my life to ride along busy streets to get to downtown. Pp

9 people like this
Posted by Kim K.
a resident of Parkside
on Jun 27, 2017 at 5:49 pm

Thank you city of Pleasanton staff for making these much needed changes. As a mom whose children bike all over town, including downtown, the bike parking is very welcome. Anything the city can do to make biking a better safer choice for everyone helps make Pleasanton more enjoyable for all, regardless if you bike yourself or not. One of the reasons my family chose to live in Pleasanton was the sense of community we felt in downtown. The parklet is going to enhance that feeling. People are what make a community, not cars, and certainly not parking.

3 people like this
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jun 27, 2017 at 6:45 pm

As a full time working dad, I appreciate efficiency in completing tasks. I want access. These can exist simultaneously

5 people like this
Posted by Another W.G. Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Valley
on Jun 28, 2017 at 11:09 pm

Another W.G. Parent is a registered user.

Pleasanton Parent: it's very easy to transport small purchases by bike. Most establishments downtown are restaurants or coffee shops, it's not difficult to transport your lunch or coffee home once you've consumed it!

People need to slow down and enjoy this wonderful town. Fewer cars on the roads will benefit everyone in the long run.

6 people like this
Posted by SteveM
a resident of Sycamore Heights
on Jun 29, 2017 at 7:14 am

SteveM is a registered user.

Parking is so difficult downtown that anything done to open more parking spaces is a good idea. Every time you see more than on bike in the bike park Pleasanton has more than broken even. I wish there were more spots in other parts of the downtown area. Good move a Pleasanton. Keep up the good work!

Like this comment
Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Meadows
on Jun 29, 2017 at 2:00 pm

Pleasanton Parent is a registered user.

Another W.G Parent - you're projecting your world on mine, lets move beyond your use case as the baseline for what downtown access should be to be inclusive of mine as well? Fair deal? I want the ability to preserve the downtown feel and have a sense of intimacy and serenity as well....when I'm fortunate enough to have those free moments to do so. But between soccer game parties, picking up large orders for parties or other, taking a family from one side of town out for dinner or ice cream to be back in time to finish any homework, baths, etc. I need access.

8 people like this
Posted by JPH
a resident of Valley View Elementary School
on Jun 29, 2017 at 2:24 pm

JPH is a registered user.

Great idea and probably overdue. If this pilot encourages more local folks & families to ride downtown then that will actually benefit the parking situation as well as being a healthier option and it's a win win. The idea of a pilot is to try it and see, so... let's try it and see! I love seeing families or friends riding to the Farmers' Market or to the Concert in the park. Kudos for the foresight to offer an option other than driving especially when walking may not be an option.

7 people like this
Posted by Ron Castia
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 29, 2017 at 2:40 pm

Ron Castia is a registered user.

Here is what doesn't make sense.
Most of the comments are from people who live in Pleasanton. Right?
Are you telling me NONE of you have been to Downtown Livermore where they have on street restaurant seating for years?

If it works in other cities, why would it not work in Pleasanton?
What makes Livermore so special that on street seating/dining ONLY works there?

I am with Jim on the math. If only 4 people opt in to ride a bike from a nearby neighborhood to get coffee, or have lunch, then your are gaining 1 parking space.

10 people like this
Posted by Ornithology
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 30, 2017 at 6:35 am

Ornithology is a registered user.


The parklet WILL be avail to all. It is not just for Cafe Main customers.

The parklet WILL NOT allow smoking. This will be a non smoking area.

That is all.....

2 people like this
Posted by cymru
a resident of Foothill High School
on Jul 15, 2017 at 10:35 pm

cymru is a registered user.

I'm very happy the city is trying this out. I ride my bike downtown frequently for exercise. Peet's is my favorite stop ... there are a LOT of folks who do the same (not a minority), and they, like myself, could never find a place to lock up their bikes, so the bikes ended up chained to trees, stop signs, leaned up against walls, etc. Especially during the Farmer's Market. I happened to have a day off on a Thursday and rode downtown, the bike rack was complete ... I was the first and only person using it, by the time I left Peet's there were at least 16 more bikes using the rack, so many in fact that they still had to chain them to the nearby trees.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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