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Where are Mill Valley's Dangerous Intersections?

Know a dangerous intersection in the 94941? Click the "add" button to place it on our map.

Add a point to the map and Mill Valley Patch will follow up with city officials with their thoughts on how to improve our streets.

Nary a week goes by without a car crash at one of Mill Valley's diciest intersections. In Mill Valley, the intersection of has seen more than its share of accidents, and the city at Miller Ave. and Camino Alto after a student was hit by a car there. In Tam Valley, the county of Marin is in an effort to make the oft-dangerous intersection safer.

We'd like to hear from you about other dangerous intersections in the 94941. 

Know an intersection that you think puts pedestrians at risk? Add a point to the map and we'll follow up with city staff on their plans for making our streets safer. 

How to add a point on the map:

  1. In the right-hand corner of the map, click the "Add" button.
  2. Type in a name and the intersection you would like to add.
  3. Press submit and the pin should appear.
Jill Barnes March 15, 2012 at 05:50 PM
This is great outreach especially as we begin the General Plan update. We'll be interested in following the feedback to help plan and prioritize projects. With respect to the Little School and Whole Foods comments, we’ve heard similar concerns during the Miller Avenue planning effort and have developed a set of interim bike and pedestrian improvements to bring to City Council for consideration in April or May.
Kathy Mcleod March 15, 2012 at 07:24 PM
It is obvious from the comments here that a lot of the traffic comes from parents who have to drive their children to and from schools in Mill Valley. We need bike lanes and paths to link for a safe network all the way to the schools so that parents can trust that it is safe enough to ride to and from. Two major barriers to cyclists in the 94941 area code, if fixed, would relieve a lot of congestion and collisions. These two places not only are routes to and from school but they are gaps to the rest of the bike network. These areas are outside the Mill Valley city limit line and so are considered to be County. It would be great if the Mill Valley Bicycling and Pedestrian Committee had representation from the unincorporated area for publicly recorded comments to be heard by our County Supervisors, State Elected officials, Caltrans, DPW, TAM etc...I know the Mill Valley City Council is in favor of this since they approved of this suggestion when forming the BPAC. This problem obviously effects all the residence of Mill Valley.
Kathy Mcleod March 15, 2012 at 08:08 PM
Hi Bob! I just received a very interesting 70 page State Wide Traffic Report showing the hundreds of collisions along Shoreline Highway between 2000 and 2010. There is at least one collision per week. Eye popping, yes!! Its not surprising to see the cluster of points shown in Tam Valley along Shoreline.
Melanie Pena March 15, 2012 at 09:12 PM
Please have the city/county do something about the dangerous intersection at Tam Junction. I witness dozens of drivers making illegal turns in and out of the gas station every day. I have also seen my fair share of collisions there, too. People are just too lazy to go around the block.
Kathy Mcleod March 15, 2012 at 10:52 PM
Mari, The BPAC consist of only Mill Valley residence. It does not include any representation for the unincorporated parts of the 94941 area code. The issues on the agenda are for Mill Valley Incorporated. My comment was to ask that the City Council go back and remember that they made a motion to include representation from the Unincorporated parts of Mill Valley so that the issues along Redwood Highway frontage road and other places in Strawberry as well as the Shoreline Highway in Tam Valley have a chance to be considered for funding from somewhere, from some agency whether it be federal, state, city or county. If we all need this and want this to happen it should happen. Especially in bike friendly Marin! Right?
Scott March 16, 2012 at 12:38 AM
Not an intersection either, but people have to walk down the length of Evergreen Avenue, the major avenue in the neighborhood, in the street in the same lanes as cars do. Very dangerous situation.
Mari March 16, 2012 at 12:49 AM
Oh yes, Scott - such a dangerous street - with a dedicated path along 2/3 of it - and no record of any incidents. The only dangerous intersection here is where your brain meets expression of thought. Give me a break.
Scott March 16, 2012 at 01:52 AM
Sorry you feel that way, Mari. But in my view, pedestrian and vehicular traffic shouldn't mix particularly on busy streets. The path you mention is often un-passable given the cars that regularly park on it. Nevertheless, insults are uncalled for and in no way advances the discussion.
Jean March 16, 2012 at 03:44 AM
I see this all the time, too. People hold up the left turn lane that goes to Shoreline Hwy. (Arco gas station on the left, rug shop in front of you) so that they can cross the double line to turn into the gas station. As they turn, often a car is turning right the opposite direction, from Shoreline Hwy, nearly causing a collision. I'd like to see a low raised barrier here to make it more obvious not to make an illegal turn into the gas station. Same goes for making a left turn out of the Arco gas station onto Shoreline.
Mari March 16, 2012 at 03:51 AM
Sorry that I feel that way, too - but I've heard this tune before and must have lost my sense of how to "bend over backwards" for a minute. Actually, I was speaking of the path that is separated from traffic with a drainage berm - between Linden and Scott - what path did you think I meant? The area between Ethel and Linden? That can be a bit tricky, because there are more cars parked there - and of course, the intersection at Whole Foods at Evergreen area is busy and very congested. Please let me know when you want to work together instead of just telling me and everyone else who lives on Evergreen what we should or should not be doing to make your life a bit more convenient. Weather permitting, we'll meet on Saturday at 10:00 am Whole Foods corner. Since Evergreen is approximately 2,000 feet long, and of varying widths - it helps to clarify where exactly you feel unsafe, so we can make some cooperative efforts to improve the situation - without having to deal with bureaucracy. You know how to reach me : 415-779-4941.
Jean March 16, 2012 at 03:53 AM
The intersection where Shoreline Hwy. meets Northern/Maple in Tam Valley is a crazy mess. It's not clear who has the right of way, cars fly off of Shoreline onto Northern and Maple, which is unsafe. I understand why some make the move so fast- it's to avoid getting hit by cars going too fast around the blind curve as they come down Shoreline. At the same time, drivers are trying to manage a turn from Maple to Northern while watching out for cars coming from 3 other directions. I don't know the best solution, but something needs to be done. Kids ride their bikes through this area on their way to and from school, and they need a safer route to make their way from Northern to Marin Ave.
Rachelle Sarosi March 16, 2012 at 04:25 AM
Miller Ave and Millwood has got to be the most dangerous intersection. First people come zooming out of downtown at very high speeds some not realizing its a 2 lane road. Then because Miller splits so many people take go down the wrong way. Cars coming from MIllwood to Miller stopped in front of the cabinet shop dont have a good view of whats coming down MIller. I live in the apartments right at the intersection I hear at 1 least a good accident every few weeks not to mention the horn blowing. Cant believe a stop sign hasnt been placed here so so so dangerous its only a matter of time before someone ggets really hurt. THe amount of money caused by accidents here surely could have paid for a sign or stop light.
mvyahoo March 16, 2012 at 04:30 AM
The absolute WORST, and most unsafe intersection, is where Shoreline HWY meets Tennessee Valley Road (by the fruit stand). The poor people who have to make turns (in any direction), have near-death experiences. Blind corners, cars going too fast, cars making turns way to soon, you name it...that corners got it. A traffic officer nightly from 4-6:00 would be a good start. Full-time on weekends in the summer. I cannot believe there aren't more accidents there.
Mari March 16, 2012 at 02:59 PM
@eric - Shoreline Hwy at Tennessee Valley Road is a scary one. People have to pay attention - that's probably why there aren't any accidents - perception of danger makes streets safe. Great idea for a traffic officer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CIbO3yz0P3k&feature=related http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvdWZ6O4j0E&feature=related
Mari March 16, 2012 at 03:01 PM
Rachel - that whole area is a pedestrian nightmare. Any idea what the changes are in Miller Avenue Streetscape for that area?
Mari March 16, 2012 at 03:11 PM
Funny, I've been doing a lot of research on this lately. Perception of risk makes people more alert, more accommodating and more cautious. So, places that SEEM dangerous, end up being safer. Sounds a bit goofy, but it's true. Here's an interesting article about this concept : http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/12.12/traffic.html
Susan March 16, 2012 at 04:52 PM
Ok, you can build bike paths and put up walls and paint crosswalks bright white. But, until the patrons of ALL stores on Miller Avenue take the extra 30 seconds to use the crosswalk, until bicyclists obey the laws of the road and stop at stop signs, etc. and use the crosswalks obeying pedestrian laws, and the people driving the cars make a right turn only where it is posted, nothing will change. It is people we are talking about driving their cars, riding their bikes, crossing where they feel like it and blaming it on each other. Figure out how to get everyone to just respect each other and the existing laws and then we are good to go.
Scott March 16, 2012 at 05:17 PM
Agreed. Pedestrians seem to think they have the right of way when they cross the street outside of the crosswalk and bikers seem to completely forget they are subject to the same laws drivers are required to obey. Bikers never stop at stop signs and often ride on the sidewalk. They also frequently ride in the middle of the street and when asked to move aside they say they have the right to the lane ignoring the law that says they have to stay as far to the right as possible and share the lane. And the cars drive all over the road never driving a consistant speed or signaling turns. It's a mess out there. Until people change, safety measure are needed. Unfortunately, people don't change.
Scott March 16, 2012 at 05:23 PM
Reaching out at this juncture is a bit too little too late. And I really don't see the need. A compromise was reached with one of the two groups opposed and the decision has been made. There's rarely a societal decision that satisfies everybody so trying to do so would be an exercise in futility. The sidewalk is going to be built this summer. I think the only thing left to discuss is the color and there I don't have an opinion. It seems that is one area you could offer up an opinion to mitigate at least some of your aesthetic concerns.
Scott March 16, 2012 at 05:26 PM
I don't think that's as much of a safety concern than it is a royal pain for those that need to get to/from Tn Valley. But I thought I read somewhere that a traffic light is in the plans for that intersection. Or am I imagining that?
Kathy Mcleod March 16, 2012 at 06:19 PM
I agree Maple/Northern/ Shoreline show 13 reported crashes from 2000 to 2010. However, I do know in the last two years there have been more crashes at this location. This morning a friend called to let me know about a cycling collision there due to a speeding car coming onto Maple/ Northern off of Shoreline. The crash happened as the cyclist was turning left off of Browning where there is no sight distance to the left from Browning onto Northern.
Christina March 16, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Yes, the most dangerous intersection in our community is Shoreline-Northern-Maple, where cars turn from Shoreline at fast speeds since it is impossible for them to assess if a car is coming from around the sharp corner. No one knows who has the right of way. My husband was involved in an accident on his bicycle because of car speeding in wet weather from Shoreline. When I turn from Maple onto Northern I believe I have the right of way, since I am in the 25 mph zone. But I am in the minority as cars from Shoreline turn quickly without yielding to cars or pedestrians. If the County could only offer CLARITY regarding who has the right of way and make sure cars turning from Shoreline do not speed (speedbump? stoplight?). Also, I am disappointed that nothing has been done on Shoreline itself. The road is always in need of repair and a shoulder needs to be created. And whoever heard of putting a crosswalk at a bus stop. People don't stop since they think that pedestrians are waiting for the bus. The 'yield for pedestrians' sign is constantly mauled down.
Kathy Mcleod March 16, 2012 at 09:00 PM
FYI, I just counted the accidents at Tennessee Valley Road. They include one death, four severely injured with150 victims and over 75 vehicles between 2000 and 2010. 49 reported collisions all total. That doesn't include the past year and 1/2. Almonte and Shoreline win the prize though with 120. Both of these areas appear dangerous to me. I don't think your theory works here.
Mari March 16, 2012 at 09:50 PM
Scott - despite popular belief - I have safety and environmental concerns that outweigh any and all aesthetic concerns.
Mari March 16, 2012 at 09:52 PM
Kathy - did you read the Wired article? The concept of shared space works best with a low speed limit - 10-15 mph.
Mari March 17, 2012 at 12:36 AM
Kathy - sorry - I had that confused with another intersection. I was at the Dipsea a few days ago, parked where the fruit stand used to be - and had to crouch under the road to get to the other side! Cars go WAY too fast. I was thinking the intersection at Tam Junction could use a traffic officer. duh.
Alan Jones March 17, 2012 at 01:08 AM
I know exactly what you mean. The problem is I myself can be both the impatient pedestrian and the angry motorist. How do I respect these two sides of myself? Making crosswalks and bike paths helps a lot, it seems to me, to create the reminders that we all need to respect others!
Frank O'Shea March 21, 2012 at 10:34 PM
Another dangerous and poorly designed intersection (by today’s standards) is indeed the intersection of East Blithedale and Ashford Avenues as noted in the article. This intersection needs to be completely redesigned for better safety and traffic flow. Please read more by going to the following link: http://millvalley.patch.com/articles/crash-snarls-evening-traffic-on-east-blithedale. Also, how about widening the small portion of Blithedale between the two merging points of Ashford and Lomita. This makes no sense to funnel traffic from four lanes to two and back again.
Anne Tique August 09, 2012 at 01:14 AM
Annie, you are so right. My kids have had to run out of the cross walk rather than get hit, been hollered at by motorists not wanting to stop, and even experienced MV police ignoring their presence waiting to cross.
Anne Tique August 11, 2012 at 01:00 AM
Be very careful at the Melrose Avenue and LaVerne Avenue intersection, for chances are decent someone along LaVerne is going to blow right through. This, I do not understand.

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