Town Square

Traffic Lights Around Town

Original post made by Rob, Walnut Grove Elementary School, on Oct 12, 2007

Does anybody else notice the lenght of time when it comes to certain traffic signals? The ones' that stick out in my mind are Santa Rita/West Las Positas (by the hostpital) and Stoneridge Drive/Foothill (I think it turns into something else because I'm talking about the one right when you cross over to go up into The Preserves housingarea.) I have sat NUMEROUS times for minutes at both lights. People on other sides of the streets pull up and wait for maybe half a minute while I sat there for 2/3 minutes. Sometimes the one by the hospital is horrible. I have come home from a friends house around midnight before and have sat at the light for 5 minutes. I'm sure it's illegal, but I have backed and pulled foward, thinking I will trip the switch- does that even exsist? Overall I think safety can come into play, especially at night. Sitting at a traffic signal when it's dark and late can be kind of creepy. What is everyone elses thoughts?


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Valencia
on Oct 13, 2007 at 11:57 am

Web Link

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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Oct 13, 2007 at 12:49 pm

That light at Vineyard and Montevino has been a mixed success. Traffic is much better on Vineyard through that intersection during commute hours, but is worse further back on Bernal. It is like the traffic that used to accumulate at Vineyard and Montevino has just been moved elsewhere.

Regarding sitting at lights at night, I agree it is somewhat stupid. I got stopped alone at Hopyard and Black at 11pm one night and then waited for the light to cycle just to let a car turn left onto Hopyard. I don't understand why certain lights can't be a flashing red or flashing yellow at those hours of the night. The car could have gone left long before I neared the intersection if it were flashing red or yellow.

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Posted by Joe
a resident of Birdland
on Oct 14, 2007 at 7:33 am

I leave my home at about 5AM to get to work and I regularly go through the red light there (after stopping and looking both ways). It's 3 minutes to change from red to green and I'd rather pay the damn ticket then wait for the light.

BTW, if I get hit, then it's not my fault because you hit me.

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Posted by Mike Tassano
a resident of another community
on Oct 15, 2007 at 4:30 pm

Rob - Thank you for posting your concern here at the Pleasanton Weekly. I check here from time to time for traffic related items.

I have a staff member checking the night functionality of our traffic cameras at the intersections of Santa Rita @ West Las Positas and Stoneridge @ Foothill. We do not currently have any faults flagged at either of these two locations.

Stacey - Vineyard @ Bernal is awaiting the construction of the second bridge over the arroyo. This construction will allow a second southbound left turn lane which will improve the operation allowing better processing of the traffic from the Vineyard @ Montevino traffic signal.

Stacey and Joe - Hopyard @ Black was without detection for nearly a year as City staff completed sewer repairs. The sewer repair work damaged the traffic sensors, and we operated the signal on a fixed cycle until the sewer work was completed and we could make a permanent repair to the detection. The repairs have been completed. Please let me know if you still experience delays.

As for the flashing yellows - we do not run flashing yellow signals any longer. The normal practice was to flash the main street yellow and the side street red. Unfortunately the side street drivers, when seeing the flashing red, often came to the conclusion that the opposing direction was also in flashing red and would pull out in front of a vehicle passing through a yellow.

We currently have a system that operates in one of two different ways at night. The signal either rests in green on the main street or rests in green in the direction of the last vehicle. Flashing red forces everyone to stop and I would prefer to have a vehicle slow down and receive a green instead of forcing them to stop when no one is around. As you have noted, the system is not yet perfect and I encourage you to email me directly on any intersections that you find could use improvement. signals currently only detect a vehicle a few hundred feet before the intersection, and I understand the frustration with approaching a green only to have it turn yellow to let out the side street. We are looking into ways to better recognize approaching traffic, but as of yet have not found an economical way to implement this advanced detection.

Again, I thank you for taking the time to post your concerns, if you have additional concerns or would like clarification on these or other intersections, do not hesitate to send me an email.

Mike Tassano
Deputy Director of Public Works/ Transportation
City of Pleasanton

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Posted by Rob
a resident of Walnut Grove Elementary School
on Oct 15, 2007 at 5:56 pm

Well poop to some of that. Pleasanton is not booming with traffic at 11 or 12 at night. On rare occassions will I see a lot of care- like in summer time or if there was a school dance, fairgrounds event etc. Certain areas that have very minimal traffic at these hours should be flashing red all the way around to make all cars stop for a second then go. I bet a good portion of Pleasanton people have experienced having to stop from green to red more often then a steady green light at night time hours. But thanks for the info on other streets in town.

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Posted by Tom
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Oct 15, 2007 at 11:19 pm

It's not only Pleasanton that believes traffic lights should be used to punish people. Last week at about 11AM I was driving east on Amador Valley in Dublin. As I approached Stagecoach, my light turned red. There were no cars on either side of Stagecoach and no people anywhere in sight. Nor were there any cars going west on Amador Valley. So I sat there for about 2 minutes until a car came south on Stagecoach. Just before it got to the intersection, the light turned red for him/her and green for me. If that isn't deliberate harrassment, I don't know what is. Pleasanton does the same thing, lights turn red for no reason.

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Posted by Carol
a resident of Vineyard Avenue
on Oct 27, 2007 at 12:16 am

The traffic light at First street and Vineyard and Ray street are so frustrating. The light will stay green for a long time on First and if your lucky WHEN THE DARN LIGHT FINALY CHANGES, you can consider it a good evening if THREE car get through the intersection. I drive my son to a class every Tuesday and Thursday evenings at about 7:10. Sometimes you can sit there for several minutes without another car in site. I'm asumming this is so the commuters will not be hindered cutting through Pleasanton. Another problem and Saftey hassard is that these commuter fly through late yellows and even red lights. We have alot of children who cross that street on their way to school. I would hate to read that another child was hit by a car like the little girl today on Case Ave. Yes I understand that she was not in a crosswalk, but there are crosswalks around this intersection and I still see people turning right without even checking for pedestrians. Exspecialy when these people don't stop at their red light. My son has almost been hit several times.

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Posted by Richard
a resident of another community
on Dec 2, 2014 at 10:35 am

I would like to remind the City of Pleasanton, City Planners, that traffic signals are intended to improve the flow of traffic, not impede it. Keeping that in mind I would like to hear an explanation for the traffic lights installed on Bernal between Foothill and the fairgrounds. With lights positioned less than a block apart it would seem imperative that the lights are synchronized together to maximize the flow of traffic. The latest light installed at the onramp to 680 south does nothing but create grid lock through that area since it is completely out of sync with all the other lights. I realize Cal Trans owns that one and does not play well with others but I would think the City of Pleasanton would want to do something to get traffic to flow through the city. Currently you are creating artificial air pollution zones by stalling traffic. We are all aware that motor vehicles create more air pollution while idling, and getting zero gas mileage, than moving. Wake up Pleasanton. Your excessively long light cycles, and poorly synchronized traffic lights do nothing but reflex poor management at the city planning level.

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Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Dec 2, 2014 at 11:38 am

Worst traffic management ever, I'm betting these traffic "engineers" don't even live in town and never have to deal with these messed up lights 7 days a week!! Definetly favors the commuters but why on a 24 hour a day basis?? Pick almost any intersection in town and you will sit at that red light for 2-4 minutes with no cross traffic in sight, it's no wonder that everybody runs the yellow and red lights!! Forget the commuters, fix the timing of the lights, maybe it will discourage a couple vehicles from cutting through our town!!

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Posted by Bill
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Dec 2, 2014 at 12:14 pm

Can wait up to two minutes for the left turn light to turn green late at night from northbound Santa Rita to westbound Stoneridge.
Stronerigde traffic signal at Willow will change to red for no reason on Sunday mornings.
Why isn't Stoneridge traffic signals synchronized, at least from Santa Rita to Hopyard and Foothill to Hopyard?
If Fremont can work with Caltrans to coordinate the traffic signals at 880/Auto Mall Parkway/ Osgood, then Pleasanton and Caltrans should be able to corrdinate the signals on Bernal leading to the 680 on ramps. Right now this section is a free for all chaotic mess and this was prior to the start of the current contruction project.

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Posted by Me
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 2, 2014 at 12:29 pm

The 4 lights in a row - W Las Positas, Owens, Iron Horse and Stoneridge are not timed and they are all long cycle lights.

I have seen two cars run the W Las at Owens heading west. The turn by the hospital can cause a driver to see the Iron Horse light prior to the Owens light a they appeared to fixate on the second ignoring the Red owns light - seeing the green iron horse light. This is dangerous the iron horse and Stoneridge light should time the same or there will be a wreck.

The ridiculous light cycles in Pleasanton cause stop and go traffic and increase air pollution (plus noise pollution that includes my swearing)

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Posted by Map
a resident of Del Prado
on Dec 2, 2014 at 8:40 pm

I have better odds hitting all the numbers on a super lotto ticket than I do hitting 2 green lights in a row on any given street in Pleasanton, real sad mr. Tassano time to step up and fix this nightmare!!

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Posted by Valley Hostage
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Dec 4, 2014 at 11:42 pm

A little flashing yellow light is needed before the Danbury Park entrance on Valley Ave. All of the East side (Livermore,Vintage, Ruby etc) piles up in the right lane. Valley Ave going East, to turn right onto Santa Rita North to the Hacienda job center. Many haven't heard that Stoneridge Drive is OPEN all the way from Livermore, past the Outlets, through Hacienda business park, to Stoneridge Mall, straight, never even a turn from Outlets to S Mall. Pretty slick and empty!! I thought Pleasantonians were smarter, but apparently not, they prefer piling up on Valley. I hope they have a plan for when there is a train trestle catastrophe, or flood and the entire East side is totally shut down, maybe in a few months, for extended periods..
The East side is totally shut off with dead ends. Valley is the one and only connector, except for new, wide, lonely, empty Eastside Stoneridge Drive connection. Why are commuters like cattle, all just like waiting in right lane, going West, turning up Santa Rita, sniffing each other's fumes. (sort of like dogs). Why were all other circulation connectors dead-ended. We need to check the records for names of the nitwits who gridlocked the town with those short-sighted blunders..a pox on their houses.

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Posted by Jtjh
a resident of Vintage Hills
on Dec 5, 2014 at 12:35 am

It sometimes seems that with every new month, a new traffic signal springs up in Pleasanton. I don't think that all of them are necessary.. The Stop signs on Bernal/Vineyard and Bernal/Tawny, for example, always seemed to me to be perfectly adequate and time-efficient. I don't understand why they were replaced by the traffic signals.