Stevens Creek Trail repair complete

Stevens Creek Trail near El Camino Real has been fixed.

It took a year, but the portion of Stevens Creek Trail damaged in the 2016 rainy season has been repaired.

Heavy erosion in Stevens Creek next to the Extended Stay America hotel close to El Camino Real wiped out the paved trail. A narrow bypass trail was built.

It snaked through some redwoods, which was a nuisance, especially since bikes were supposed to be walked. Of course, nobody walked.

That’s the first time I’ve seen the trail closed by erosion.

Back in the early 1980s, Charlie Gibson, Mountain View Parks and Recreation, showed me plans for how the trail would one day extend all the way to Stevens Creek Reservoir.

At the time, there was considerable debate over finding a route beyond El Camino Real/Hwy 85.

Local residents along the proposed route raised objections, of course, so the trail ends at the Highway 85 recreation path overpass. It’s an excellent overpass, one of the best I’ve ridden.

I’m skeptical that the trail will ever make it to the reservoir. There’s too many houses in between and following the creek is impractical. There’s not enough space for a trail past Fremont Avenue.

It’s a miracle the trail extends as far as it does. It took a lot of engineering to figure a way through all the freeways and streets. I’m amazed it came to pass every time I ride the trail.

4 Responses to “Stevens Creek Trail repair complete”

  1. Jon Blum Says:

    Sunnyvale and Cupertino still have plans to continue the trail south of the bridge over 85 (which I agree is excellent). Progress has been glacial. It’s likely that much of the “trail” will be on roads (bike lanes or chevrons) rather than a separate bike path, as following the creek would be impractical and/or too costly. I attended a meeting for residents along some of the potential routes between Fremont and Homestead. There was much vitriol, including some rather bizarre objections such as the idea that directing cyclists onto their street would attract burglars and other riff-raff. I was cussed at for speaking in favor of a path.

  2. Robert Neff Says:

    There have been a lot of meetings between Sunnyvale, Los Altos, Mountain View, and Cupertino about extending the trail, some on street, and some in open space along highway 85. You should contact Friends of the Stevens Creek Trail for the latest. It is sad that neighborhood opposition in Cupertino has prevented movement on some key links.

  3. Tom Schaefer Says:

    In 2011 the cities of Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Los Altos and Cupertino formed a “Joint Cities Working Team”, which met over the following five years to investigate ways of extending the Stevens Creek Trail from the highway 85 bridge (Dale/Heatherstone) southward as far as Stevens Creek Blvd.

    Numerous alignments were analyzed (mostly on-street) which aroused heated (and often well-organized) opposition from residents along those streets and surrounding neighborhoods.

    The net result was a fairly concrete plan to extend the trail along the creek as far as Fremont Avenue (which is currently being pursued by Mountain View and Sunnyvale), and some additional proposals for continuing south to SCB, whose future is less certain or must await a change in the political climate.

    An excellent summary of this process is found at this link:

    South of SCB, a portion of the trail already exists, running south along the creek as far as McClellan Road, and my understanding is that right-of-way has been acquired which will allow it to continue south to Linda Vista Park.

    These kinds of projects tend to move at a glacial pace. It has taken more than twenty years to gradually build the trail up to its present length. The hope is that continued persistence and patience will pay off.

  4. Jon Blum Says:

    Tom, thank you for sending that report. It does note local objections including crime and graffiti, which are pretty strange when you look at the magnitude of crime and graffiti problems on other bike paths (including the Stevens Creek Trail). Yet the nimbies prevail, presumably due to the sensitivity of local politicians. Each neighborhood organizes to push the proposal away from where they live. I live quite near Fremont and Bernardo, and would be happy to see the trail near my home, should I be lucky enough to live that long.

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