Main/Clay/Cedar Ravine intersection

By From page A5 | August 04, 2014


The Placerville City Council has voted to eliminate a roundabout at the intersection of Main and Cedar Ravine. But when did the council vote to substitute a four-way intersection for the roundabout, as implied in the Democrat’s “Save the Druid Monument” editorial?

Does that mean the council has already decided to realign the Clay Street Bridge, eliminate numerous parking places at the Ivy House lot, prevent continuation of the Saturday morning Farmer’s Market at its present location, put “substitute parking” off Locust (most spaces right next to the Trail and others spaces in a residential neighborhood), and disrupt with construction a vital part of our town — all so residents of the south Clay street area can turn left onto Main?

Assuming final decisions have not yet been made, here’s a suggestion.

Put a “Right Turn Only” sign at the Clay/Main intersection.

Cost to the City: minimal. No disruption of tourist traffic and local businesses. No loss of needed parking places. No need to relocate the Farmer’s Market. No impact on the city’s ability to make required improvements to the Clay Street bridge. No interference with extending the trail from Clay to Bedford. No need to move the Druid Monument.

Admittedly, residents of the south part of Clay won’t be able to turn left on Main. But Clay has another exit, onto Mosquito. Yes, it may be inconvenient. But the monetary and quality of life cost of a four-way intersection to everyone else in Placerville is too high — even without considering issues such as signal lights and signage.

Placerville has changed since the issue of the Clay/Main/Cedar Ravine intersection first arose. The area where Clay intersects with Main is becoming a destination with an attractive ambiance. Adequate parking is needed now more than ever. Recently, the Ivy House parking lot has been almost full and parking (by those who won’t or can’t feed city meters) has spilled over onto south Clay.

Hopefully, City Council will take a new look at this divisive issue. Council members may want to take in the scene around Clay and Main before sending in the heavy equipment.


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