We’ve written about the bottleneck at the intersection of Bicentennial Way and Mendocino Avenue, with Kaiser Permanente-bound drivers feeding into six lanes of north-south city traffic. Sometimes it’s a signal malfunction. These days it’s also construction aimed at easing the pain. Keep reading for a question and a project update.

Question: I have seen recent complaints regarding back up at the left turn lane into Kaiser from east Bicentennial Way just after you cross the 101 overpass.and before Mendocino Ave.  I think part of the problem is the left turn signal.  I am undergoing chemo and so make quite a few trips to Kaiser using this turn signal.  Quite a few times I have sat through several rounds of the signal for all sides with the left turn signal seemingly stuck.

Yesterday it took 5 rounds of the signal for the left turn arrow to finally work.  In the meantime several cars drove through the red light and quite a few cars made “U” turns which would allow them to enter Kaiser via the driveway at westbound Bicentennial.  I was just about to do the same when it suddenly decided to work.  My other option was to try and pull out of the left turn lane and proceed to Mendocino and turn left at the light there to enter Kaiser from the middle turn lane.

There were several near misses from those making the “U” turn, or trying to pull back out into the east bound Bicentennial. Can someone have the traffic lights checked to see why it often the left turn arrow seems to be malfunctioning? — Joyce Robalino, Santa Rosa

Answer: Since the last complaint here we actually started double servicing that left, which has helped a lot with the traffic for that movement.  It sounds like this issue was related to a detection problem.  I will ask our crews to take a look. — Rob Sprinkle, Santa Rosa Traffic Engineer

Construction details

We sent a request from Road Warrior reader Dianne for more details to Santa Rosa’s Supervising Engineer Steve Dittmer, who produced this information about the project:

– It will improve traffic movement through the intersection by adding right turn lanes for southbound Mendocino Ave. onto Bicentennial Way and eastbound Bicentennial Way onto Mendocino Ave.

– It will take about three months.

– Typically work will be done Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. to avoid high commute hours, though there may be occasions when some weekend work is necessary.

– Most paving on Mendocino Avenue will occur at night.


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  1. jeff

    “Temporary Pain” – at Kaiser. I love it!

    July 3rd, 2013 9:24 am

  2. G

    There is no reason a project like this should take 3 months to complete. What a joke.

    July 3rd, 2013 11:02 am

  3. Safedriver

    “Typically work will be done Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. to avoid high commute hours…” said Supervising Engineer Steve Dittmer. These are the exact hours Kaiser Hospital is at it’s peak traffic!!! You are luck if you find an open parking space in those parking lots. Hello!

    July 3rd, 2013 4:22 pm

  4. Brian

    I hate to say it, but Santa Rosa has some of the most non-responsive traffic signals I’ve seen. More often than not, I’m forced to wait at a red light while the light for the cross traffic is green, with no traffic coming. This is during my drive home at 1am, so it’s not like it’s peak traffic hours either. This takes place all the time on Bicentennial Way & Range.

    July 6th, 2013 7:26 pm

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