Durant Avenue Task Force Ask Residents to Participate in Campaign to Reduce Speeding, Large Trucks

Residents on Durant Avenue are being asked to intentionally park their cars along the residential curb every last Friday of the month, starting on Jan. 31.

Spray painted signs for the Critical Mass on Friday. Credit: Leah Hall
Spray painted signs for the Critical Mass on Friday. Credit: Leah Hall

The Durant Avenue Task Force will be holding their first “Critical Mass” on Friday from 4 to 7 p.m.

Residents are being asked to intentionally park their cars in front of the residential curbs along Durant Avenue every last Friday of the month.

Many residents have been hesitant about parking their cars along the curb “due to the fact that many cars go on speeding by along with large trucks knocking off mirrors and side-swiping cars.” 

This proposal is to emphasize to large commercial trucks how narrow of a residential street Durant Avenue is. As well as to remind drivers to slow down as they drive down Durant Avenue for the safety of pedestrians and the residents’ properties. 

“We have had high-speed chases on this narrow street that end up knocking down our fences and rip up our lawns, “ said Gus Roldan from the Durant Avenue Task Force. 

The Durant Avenue Task Force is asking the City of San Leandro for a “No Large Trucks” sign and Traffic Calming Solutions. Two Traffic Calming Solutions for Durant Avenue include a chicane and raised crosswalks, according to the Durant Avenue Task Force Facebook page. 

  • Chicane (see pictures above): two or three section curb bump that forces motorists to maneuver through a narrow, single or two lane angled roadway section at a midblock location 
  • Raised Crosswalk (see pictures above): similar to a speed hump, except these are installed at intersections to elevate crosswalks

In October 2013, the task force wrote a letter to City officials and the San Leandro Engineering and Transportation Department. To view the letter, which is featured in The Broadmoor Beacon, click here.

“We hope that our concerns are not just simply ignored because of the lack of willingness by other neighbors or city officials that has been evident in the past, and that now is the time to make a stand for our city,” said Roldan in the letter.

The Durant Task Force has composed YouTube videos with different video clips of speeding vehicles and large commercial trucks traveling on Durant Avenue. 

WATCH: Large Commercial Trucks

WATCH: Speeding Vehicles

The Durant Avenue Task Force hopes to improve the quality of life for residents of the Durant Avenue corridor of the cities of San Leandro and Oakland. For more information, please visit the Durant Avenue Task Force Facebook page.

An\on January 28, 2014 at 12:28 PM
The city has installed speed bumps to slow down traffic -- all traffic -- not just the trucks you complain about. You posted copies of the City Ordinance but it's legal to drive trucks on Durant since there are no truck restriction signs at either end.
Leah Hall January 28, 2014 at 12:54 PM
Thank you for mentioning the truck signs. That is another fascinating matter that Gus Roldan, aka Sir Durant, has noticed and documented. Along East 14th, there are those "no trucks signs" along every residential street except Durant Avenue. This needs to change, it is absurd to have these trucks running convoys along Durant Avenue. Case in point - the "15 MPH" sign posted at one of those lame ancient speed bumps between Beverly and Warwick has been knocked askew (either by a commercial truck or a high speed vehicle police chase). Bring your popcorn when you visit Durant Ave because there are at least 3 overlapping public safety forces in force (SLPD, OPD and the Alameda County Sheriffs. Front row seats to thrills, spills, and automobiles. Dukes of Hazard eat your heart out. :)
Gus Roldan January 28, 2014 at 01:31 PM
Trucks originating in Oakland for example must finish ther business in Oakland unless making a delivery to a particular address. The semi-truck I know was not making a delivery of 50 feet rebar to any home around here. Now if they were doing business in Oakland, let me get technical, he can only drive in Durant (going west) on the Oakland side. As you can see, it's rediculous. I got a measure were the pot hole is in the middle of the street in order to call the appropriate DPW, again rediculous. These pot holes are due to all the trucks as well. They literally shake these 1920 homes.
Leah Hall January 28, 2014 at 01:43 PM
The borderline should be moved, IMHO. I don't know how, and I don't know who, but it should. Another innovation that should be seriously considered is "Filtered permeability" like the pioneers in Berkeley have installed. Let the people and bikes through, not the cut-through intercity traffic. I'm going to duck now. :) http://renegadeimage.com/berkeleyafoot/2011/10/24/berkeley-filtered-permeability-pioneer/
An\on January 28, 2014 at 07:34 PM
Very clever, Leah. You're in an urban area surrounded by urban areas. Have you and Gus Roldan aka"Sir Durant" (your opprobrium, not mine) stopped to consider that commercial vehicles need to deliver stuff to the stores where you shop? Groceries, get-well cards, clothes, beer, restaurant supplies, coffee to coffee shops, stuff to Durant Square, etc. Check the maps. The only lateral access between E. 14th & MacArthur is Durant, all other options run through residential housing. I'm sure the homeowners on Broadmoor would be ecstatic over having the truck route switched to their street. Everyone wants their groceries, bottled water, clothes, city sanitation, etc. to be delivered to some convenient location near them (walking distance, even); and everyone complained about the run-down condition of Foothill Square that attracted crime, but nobody wants the trucks that make the deliveries. NIMBY. Perhaps you would have us sewing our own clothes, raising our own food and refining our own petroleum? If you want the "stuff", put up with the trucks or move to Manteca. I understand they have lots of truck route laterals.
An\on January 28, 2014 at 07:51 PM
Using y our logic, trucks delivering in Oakland with their next delivery in north Hayward would have to travel back to the freeway on streets exclusively in Oakland, drive to the off ramp nearest their delivery in Hayward and drive exclusively on Hayward streets to make their delivery. How much money do you want to spend on the things you buy in order to make this inefficient system work?
Gus Roldan January 28, 2014 at 08:31 PM
We are not complaining about UPS or FED ex trucks here. You find flat bed tow trucks with no consideration for residents sleeping at 2 am BOUNCING And speeding down Durant avenue. You have your daily semi driving trying to squeeze by knocking off a mirror and getting on 580 which by the way, no trucks allowed into Oakland . They just don't drive towards Hayward. I know, because I followed them before.
Gus Roldan January 28, 2014 at 08:33 PM
Mirrors are expensive for the person having to fix them. If you don't fix your mirror, you have to pay the citation, the citations are also expensive.
Leah Hall January 28, 2014 at 08:43 PM
Sir Durant, my advice is to let the anon. poster have the last word. Cowardice got us into this mess and we have only begun to fight. We're here, we're sincere, get used to it! A wonderful quote on courage: “Courage is an inner resolution to go forward despite obstacles; Cowardice is submissive surrender to circumstances. Courage breeds creativity; Cowardice represses fear and is mastered by it. Cowardice asks the question, is it safe? Expediency ask the question, is it politic? Vanity asks the question, is it popular? But conscience ask the question, is it right? And there comes a time when we must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular, but one must take it because it is right.” -Martin Luther King
Gus Roldan January 28, 2014 at 09:04 PM
An\on January 29, 2014 at 12:22 AM
Oh, Leah, you're good! When you can't be logical, evoke emotion and, better yet, the emotion of MLK's struggle against segregation. Segregation this isn't! This doesn't raise itself to the level of class struggle. This is about the practical issues you and I live with in an urban society where we all give up some conveniences up in order to live in an urban society. And your "let him have the last word" is not only arrogant but also recognition that your logic is faulty.
An\on January 29, 2014 at 12:31 AM
Gus.....read my comments to Leah. This is not class struggle, it's about you living in an urban environment. Period. It's about giving up some conveniences because you live in an urban environment. Read the Vehicle Code. Any truck with two axles can go anywhere a car with two axles goes. But that's not your complaint. You object to larger trucks on your street, and as I said earlier, I sympathize with your plight. However, commercial vehicles need to get places by way of major thoroughfares on the shortest route possible. As a result cities recognize that a few residential streets that connect major shopping, commercial areas to main thoroughfares must be designated truck routes in order for commerce to be efficient.
ORM January 29, 2014 at 04:22 AM
Which speed bumps are you talking about that the city installed? There is a speed bump right in front of my house and it does not slow down speeding vehicles. In fact lots of vehicles purposely accelerate when approaching them. This street should not be on a truck route and I am aware that tickets cannot be handed to drivers if there is no sign posted. So we are asking for a sign to be posted and to list this street on the no truck route list. We are also aware that this is an urban city and along with congested streets we will get lots of foot traffic and crime. We don't have to live with this if the city does more to help residents with street problems. Is the nice new landscape on San Leandro Blvd going to stop crime and speeding vehicles? Is it going to stop the build up of vehicles on Davis And San Leandro Blvd due to having the entrance to the Chevron on Davis and exit in SL blvd, when it should be opposite? There are lots of issues that can help traffic on our streets. Durant is not a wide street that can handle semi trucks and hundreds of other vehicles on a daily basis including a large group of bikers and also recently illegal street bikes(dirt bikes) racing through here.. A car has to pull over just to let another one pass by. The speed bump sign if front of my home is actually right next to the speed bump and it's facing the house across the street. The speed limit sign posted is 30mph not 25. It seems like there is no communication from the city officials of Oakland, they don't respond to 911 calls and SL police won't respond if the problem is on the Oakland side of thee street. (They did respond to my 911 call when they chased a car that ended tearing through my front neighbors fence and yard, because they were the ones doing the chasing.) There are many issues that begin on Durant...Where do you live? Maybe we can propose to direct the traffic to your street.
Leah Hall January 29, 2014 at 10:45 AM
Durant Avenue has played a crucial role in an ongoing history of social injustice. It was literally the Mason Dixon line of San Leandro when it had restrictive covenants which barred property owners from selling properties to African Americans and other minorities in the post-war era of California. In the early 2000’s, the city had the developer of Durant Square, a privately remodeled and repurposed automotive manufacturing plant, set aside funds to pay for traffic calming improvements needed to address impacts of the new housing and shopping project. City representatives reported that no impacts were observed by the project so the developer got his/her money back after they expired one year later. Though the restrictive covenants are gone, the attitude of both Oakland and San Leandro to this street bifurcated for 8 blocks by 2 cities has largely been to neglect it. It is time for San Leandro and Oakland to come together and fix all that s-u-u-u-cks at this border. Durant Ave. is not a buffer for the rest of the Broadmoor District. The Broadmoor District is not a buffer for the Estudillo Estates and Bay-O-Vista neighborhoods. We are a community that suffers together when a 13-year-old African American boy is shot multiple times on his way home from a party at the Boys and Girls club on International on New Years Eve. We are a community that weeps when the mother of that child losses her only other son, his older brother, 3 weeks later and less than a mile from the first shooting. There are signs of hope and cautious optimism. The Foothill Square Mall, long dark and windswept, is now being renovated. The red neon sign is being tested for all to see from 580. Cox Academy Elementary School, at 98th and Bancroft, has been beautifully remodeled and its shows signs of steady improvement over the last three years (while Washington School on Bancroft and Dutton has declined steadily during the same period). The latest testing shows Cox Academy outperforming Washington Elementary by 20 points. We are no longer in the 1970s. The attitudes and context of the discussion have greatly changed. White flight to the suburbs is no longer as relevant an issue as it has already occurred to the extent that it can go and is beginning to turn around. Prop. 13 and Equalization have had their disastrous effects and we are now starting to fix the schools in our urban areas in California. The time has come for San Leandro and Oakland to come together and strengthen the neighborhoods (streets, schools, and infrastructure) of their common border area.
Gus Roldan January 30, 2014 at 10:55 PM
Thank you to San Leandro Patch Editor Amanda Aguila for her fair, balanced, and responsive reporting ! Durant Avenue Task Force


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