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Bicycle, Pedestrian Traffic About to See the Light at Busy Isla Vista Intersection

Four-way signals being installed to give vehicles a break at Pardall Road and Embarcadero del Norte

The Santa Barbara County Public Works Department is installing four-way traffic signals at the busy Isla Vista intersection of Pardall Road and Embarcadero del Norte. Click to view larger
The Santa Barbara County Public Works Department is installing four-way traffic signals at the busy Isla Vista intersection of Pardall Road and Embarcadero del Norte. (Shomik Mukherjee / Noozhawk photo)

Isla Vista’s busiest intersection will soon have more regulated stops along with its go once the Santa Barbara County Public Works Department is done installing four-way traffic signals at Pardall Road and Embarcadero del Norte.

Traffic signals with green-painted poles are being installed on the sidewalks at the intersection, with countdown timers to indicate how long cyclists and pedestrians have to cross.

Construction on the signals began in August and will conclude by mid-September, when UC Santa Barbara begins its fall academic quarter.

UCSB and the county split the $300,000 bill for the project.

Pardall Road, Isla Vista’s “main street,” has heavy daily bicycle and foot traffic to and from the UCSB campus one block to the east.

Vehicle traffic on Embarcadero del Norte often must wait at stop signs for extended periods as pedestrians and bicycles stream along Pardall.

The majority of I.V. commercial businesses are located along the street, which opens into the university’s west side through the Pardall tunnel.

“The installation of this traffic light will increase safety for residents and visitors to the area by communicating to all cyclists, pedestrians and automobile drivers when it is their turn to travel through the intersection,” county public works director Scott McGolpin said in a statement.

California Highway Patrol officers monitoring the intersection will be encouraged to issue warnings, not citations, during the first two weeks that UCSB is back in session, CHP Capt. Cindy Pontes said.

But officers can still issue citations for any violation they “deem appropriate,” she added.

Authorities say the intersection has been the site of a number of traffic collisions over the years, often between vehicles and bicycles.

Noozhawk intern Shomik Mukherjee can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

A bicyclist passes through the Isla Vista intersection where county crews are installing a four-way traffic light. Click to view larger
A bicyclist passes through the Isla Vista intersection where county crews are installing a four-way traffic light. (Shomik Mukherjee / Noozhawk photo)

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