Del Mar awards contract for its first roundabout

Construction on Del Mar’s first roundabout should be completed by next spring.

The Del Mar City Council on Nov. 21 unanimously authorized the city manager to execute a contract for the construction of a traffic control improvement project at the San Dieguito intersection.

In addition to the construction of a roundabout at Jimmy Durante Boulevard and San Dieguito Drive, the project includes sidewalk widening and street resurfacing across the Jimmy Durante Bridge, new sidewalks, bike lane striping, pedestrian lighting and the completion of the River Path Extension project along San Dieguito Drive.

The city received 10 bids on the project. Blue Pacific Engineering and Construction was the lowest responsive bidder with the contractor’s bid at nearly $660,000. The total project construction budget is $810,000, which also includes $65,000 in project contingency funds and a little more than $85,000 for construction management.

In March, the council certified an environmental impact report on the roundabout proposal and directed city staff to finish designing the project for the intersection of Jimmy Durante Boulevard and San Dieguito Drive.

The roundabout was originally proposed as part of a citywide sidewalk improvement project, but after some community members voiced concerns about the need of a roundabout and impacts on traffic, the traffic calming device was pulled for a separate study. The report concluded that the roundabout is the “environmentally superior” option for improving the intersection, compared to a traffic signal or no changes at all.

Construction is expected to begin in December and be completed in April 2017.

The council also discussed potentially installing a city of Del Mar monument sign in the roundabout.

It would cost roughly $9,500 to $12,000 to install a monument sign similar to the signs at the north and south entrance points to the city along Camino del Mar.

According to the staff report, the monument signs, which are made of stone and feature the Del Mar logo with a Torrey Pine branch, were selected in 2007 following an extensive community process with the Del Mar Village Association and approval by the Design Review Board. The estimated cost for the project includes funds for the materials, fabrication, metal work, placement design, podium construction, and monument construction and installation.

The item was initially listed as part of the council’s consent calendar. After pulling and discussing the item, the council ultimately decided to bring the subject back for a public hearing at a later date to give the community an opportunity to weight in on the matter. The council also asked staff to explore other ideas for the space, including landscaping and a public art piece.

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