|I have a new crossing!
||[ Monday, 31 Jul 06 | 19:46 ]
The Ajuntament del Masnou (Masnou City Council) has finished installing a new signal and pedestrian crossing over Nacional II (National Route 2) to the Renfe station. In the nota informativa from the Ajuntament in my mail box it said:
Aquesta millora contribuirà a reduir la velocitat dels vehicles, així com l'impacte sonor del trànsit i alhora augmentarà la seguretat dels vianants i facilitarà l'accés a l'estació de RENFE del Masnou a les persones amb problemes de mobilitat.
Or for you non-Català readers:
This improvement will contribute to reduce the velocity of the vehicles, also with the sonic impact of the traffic and now will augment the security of the pedestrians and will facilitate the access to the El Masnou RENFE station for persons with problems of mobility.
The City Council regards this is as not a solution to the problems of traffic saturation of Nacional II and continues working on the pacificació of this road. Long-term they want the road to be “urban” with reduced speed and volume of traffic.
There already is a motorway that parallels the coastal Nacional II route only a couple kilometers away. But it is a toll road and many people use Nacional II instead because it is free. The Generalitat (Catalán Government) has approved construction of a new free motorway, but it is not clear how it will be financed or when it will be constructed.
When the new pedestrian crossing was first functional on Tuesday afternoon, they had a member of the guardia urbana (local police) stand by and make sure that everything was OK. Also interesting is that the crossing is lit up with lights at night to improve visibility, which is not that common in California. It took about three weeks from the beginning of construction until the crossing was functional.
I find that the majority of people prefer to use this grade-level crossing rather than the pre-existing tunnel, even if they have to wait a minute before they can cross. It will make it easier for me when I have my shopping cart full of groceries not having to negotiate two sets of steps.
In the picture the alcalde (mayor) of El Masnou in the marine blue coat leads of group of pedestrians inaugurating the crossing. This was taken from my terraza last Friday.