Officials from the San Diego Association of Governments and the City of San Diego recently broke ground on the Rose Creek Bikeway.
A two-mile segment of the Coastal Rail Trail bikeway linking the greater University City area with points south including Mission Bay and downtown San Diego, Rose Creek Bikeway will create a protected and more convenient connection between two existing segments of the Coastal Rail Trail. It will extend from the Rose Canyon Bike Path in University City, south to the Rose Creek Bike Path in Pacific Beach. It is one of the most heavily traveled bike corridors in the region.
“We are excited to see this project moving forward,” said SANDAG chair Terry Sinnott. “The goal of our regional bike plan is to create a network of bikeways designed for riders of all ages and abilities. This project is a big step in that direction.”
“This bikeway will be great for our community,” said District 2 Councilmember Lorie Zapf. “Since my children were small, I’ve enjoyed riding bicycles with my family and I think it is very important to have bike paths separated from vehicles, like this one will be. The Rose Creek Bikeway is an example of good planning that will enhance our community.”
When completed, the Rose Creek Bikeway will provide a 14-foot-wide paved path with environmentally sensitive lighting for added public safety. The bikeway will include under crossings at Interstate 5 and Mission Bay Drive, as well as a 260-foot-long bridge over Rose Creek. It is expected to be open to the public in early 2020.
Local stakeholders in active transportation improvements along the beachfront weighed-in on the launch of the new bikeway.
“This is great news to help incorporate Rose Creek into our community,” said Henish Pulickal, chair of Pacific Beach Planning Group. “Currently, it's an unused community asset that's been neglected and underutilized. This upcoming bike path is a great first step in this area.”
Added Pulickal, “The next step would be to implement some place-making strategies to turn Rose Creek into a focal point of this section in Pacific Beach.”
Andy Hanshaw, executive director of San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, was excited “to see this connection break ground.
“Separated and safe, the Rose Creek Bikeway will serve all people who ride including residents, commuters, students and recreational riders,” Hanshaw said.
“As part of the Regional Bike Network, we need these [funded] critical links built out now to connect people to the places they need to go that supports the healthy, active quality of life we all enjoy in San Diego. It’s these types of bikeways that will encourage more people to commute by bike and help the city reach their mode share targets to support the Climate Action Plan.”
Karin Zirk, executive director of Friends of Rose Creek, which is dedicated to Rose Creek watershed improvements, was also enthused by the bikeway.
“While the project itself is doing some minor damage to Rose Creek, we are focused on the long-term benefits,” said Zirk.
“With a wide cross-section of the community able to access this stretch of Rose Creek, we hope future generations will continue to love and care for the creek. Furthermore, we hope the popularity of this stretch of the bike path will preclude any future CalTrans development that would further encroach upon the creek.”
Bikeway development is good for other reasons, added Zirk.
“This area has suffered immensely from alternatively housed people, who have been living in this stretch of the creek and using the creek as their sewer system,” she said. “While we bear no ill will towards those with nowhere else to go, abandoned car batteries, televisions and other toxic waste have no place in our creek.
“The Friends of Rose Creek look forward to the project completion when we can partner with the amazing I Love A Clean San Diego, who provide logistical and financial support, and organized cleanups along this stretch of Rose Creek.”
The Rose Creek Bikeway is part of the Coastal Rail Trail and is being designed as a Class I bike path. Class I bikeways, also known as bike paths or shared-use paths, are facilities with exclusive right-of-way for bicyclists and pedestrians, away from the roadway and with cross flows by motor traffic minimized. Common applications include along rivers, shorelines, canals, utility rights-of-way, railroad rights-of-way, within school campuses or within and between parks.