San Clemente Council Commits to Complete Streets


By unanimous vote Tuesday evening, San Clemente’s City Council adopted its first Mobility and Complete Streets Element and Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan.

Both documents are fully integrated with the City’s new General Plan and will guide all decisions related to transportation and parking. The Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan takes effect March 6, 2014.

The City Council should be commended for its willingness to embrace multi-modal transportation. Seeking to balance the public right of way among all users, the Council has chosen to become a leader in transportation planning.

San Clemente will be better prepared to accommodate future growth and economic development while preserving the quality of life residents and visitors have enjoyed for decades. The Plan is sure to encourage other California cities to follow its footsteps.

Here’s a sampling of a few of the adopted goals and policies:

Mobility Element:

Overall Primary Goal: Create a comprehensive, multimodal transportation system that provides all users with safe connections to homes, commercial centers, job centers, schools, community centers, open spaces, recreation areas and visitor destinations.

Secondary Goals: 

Reduce dependence on single-occupant use of motor vehicles;

Widen and extend streets only when there is a demonstrated need and strive to mitigate adverse impacts to levels of non-significance . . .

Roadway System Goal: Create a balanced transportation network that provides mobility and access for all modes of travel, including motor vehicles, transit, bicyclists, pedestrians, and rail traffic.


Level of Service. When the City determines there is a suitable tool available, we will measure and evaluate roadway performance from a multi- modal, Complete Streets perspective.

Implementation Measure: Validate and incorporate a Multi-Modal Level of Service (LOS) or other metric to evaluate multi-modal facilities performance into future traffic studies.

Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan


City-wide bicycle and pedestrian facilities that provide an integrated, direct, safe, and convenient network for all users.

Create a balanced transportation system that facilitates safe travel by all modes of travel.

Children in San Clemente have a safe environment in which to walk, skateboard, and bicycle to school.


The City encourages and supports bicycle use as an efficient and legitimate mode of transportation, especially for connecting gaps between destinations and transit stops and rail stations.

Bicycle Friendly Streets. We consider every public street in San Clemente as a street that cyclists could use.

BicycleFriendly Infrastructure. We shall employ bicycle-friendly infrastructure design using new technologies and innovative treatments, where necessary to improve bicyclists’ safety and convenience.

Roadway Performance Evaluation. We shall evaluate roadway level of performance from a multi-modal, Complete Streets perspective.

Skateboarding. We encourage and support skateboard use as an efficient and legitimate transportation mode.

Intersections and Crossing Locations. We utilize Federal, State, and local guidelines and standards for traffic operations, signal timing, geometric design, Universal Access (ADA) and roadway maintenance that facilitate walking and bicycling at intersections and other key crossing locations.

Intersection Configuration. We shall require the intersections of local roads with the I-5 freeways and the proposed Toll Road to be designed using a “complete streets” approach.

Pedestrian Connectivity. We require development projects and site plans to be designed to encourage pedestrian connectivity among buildings within a site, while linking buildings to the public bicycle and pedestrian network.

Pedestrian Facility Improvements. As funding permits, we will install, or require as a condition of development approval, pedestrian facility improvements such as installation of signs, signals, street crosswalks, proper lighting, pedestrian- activated signals, street trees, placement of benches, transit shelters, shade and other ancillary pedestrian features.

Economic Development: We utilize non-motorized transportation solutions as a tool for achieving economic development and environmental sustainability goals.

Parking: Create a circulation-driven parking system which provides an appropriate level of multi- modal parking and helps reduce traffic congestion.

The new General Plan and the Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan can be downloaded from the City’s website here: