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BUSD approves contract for Phase II of Bonsall ES traffic improvements

Joe Naiman

Village News Reporter

Phase II of the Bonsall Elementary School operational traffic improvements will be constructed by Weir Construction Corporation.

The Bonsall Unified School District board voted 4-0 Saturday, Nov. 19, with Michael Gaddis absent, to approve a $296,319 contract with Weir Construction. The amount matches the Escondido company’s bid and is under the engineer’s estimate of $350,000 for Phase II of the traffic improvements.

“This will allow us to ensure that we’re maximizing the safety for our students as they come and go to school,” BUSD Superintendent Joseph Clevenger said. “It’s going to help with the ingress and egress of that traffic significantly.”

The work is intended to relieve traffic congestion around Bonsall Elementary School. In October 2021, the BUSD board approved an agreement with AlphaStudio Design Group to develop studies for improving traffic flow at the school.

AlphaStudio Design Group conducted field work comprised of visual observations to document the existing pickup and drop-off traffic congestion conditions, compiled and analyzed the findings to determine deficiencies in the current traffic flows, held information gathering meetings with BUSD staff and outside agencies, identified potential revisions to automobile and pedestrian traffic patterns and drive improvements, provided a preliminary construction cost estimate and developed a report summarizing all findings and recommendations.

The Jan. 19 BUSD board meeting included a presentation by AlphaStudio principal architect Paul Gallegos on the operational plan which focuses on traffic flow on Old River Road and Camino Del Rey.

The plan included a vehicle entry left turn and a vehicle entry right turn on Old River Road, a future traffic circle at Old River Road and Camino Del Rey, a fire access lane to the Bonsall Community Center, a pedestrian crosswalk, a vehicle traffic flow dual lane for loading and passing, a drop-off and pick-up zone, a bollard barrier on each side of the drive, a vehicular gate 20 feet from Camino Del Rey, a signalized intersection at Calle de las Brisas which will be optimized at drop-off and pickup times and a vehicle exit from Calle de las Brisas to Camino Del Rey.

The traffic flow optimization takes into account the Rio Estrella development, which was called Golf Green Estates when the subdivision map for 94 residential lots was approved, and the future Bonsall Community Park. Because a county park will be involved, the school district has been working with the San Diego County’s Department of Parks and Recreation as well as the county’s Department of Public Works and the office of County Supervisor Jim Desmond.

Performing the work in phases not only spreads out the expense over multiple fiscal years but also allows the work to be performed when school is not in session. The Phase I work was performed this summer. The pedestrian access improvements will be part of Phase II, and any improvements involving county right of way will need to undergo the county process.

The contract stipulates that construction will be completed by March 31, 2023. Substantial completion is estimated to occur by Dec. 29.

“We are again committed to ensuring the safety of our students and parents,” Clevenger said.


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