Neighborhood Traffic Management Program (NTMP)
Safety is Our Priority
One of the most persistent concerns raised by residents of San Mateo is speeding on residential streets. Therefore, the City receives many requests related to excessive traffic speeds and/or volumes. People taking “short cuts” using local streets through residential neighborhoods to avoid congestion on major roadways creates traffic problems for residents on those cut through streets.
We have a Neighborhood Traffic Management Program to help restore and maintain safe conditions for residential streets that may be experiencing excessive speeds or traffic volume.
Public Works plans to begin an update of the Neighborhood Traffic Management Program in 2020. The update will provide a streamlined application process for traffic calming requests. Staff will also reevaluate thresholds established in the current NTMP and determine where they can lowered to make traffic calming improvements more accessible to a larger portion of the community.
Why We Created the NTMP
The City used to address neighborhood speeding concerns on a case-by-case and street-by-street basis. We soon realized that we needed a way to address entire neighborhoods. The NTMP addresses many aspects of traffic management as well as our multi-tiered approach to traffic calming and establishes a consistent policy.
The Three E’s
Our policy focus is on the three “E’s”: Education, Enforcement, Engineering.
Education measures involve speed trailers that tell a driver how fast they are going, and more signage to remind drivers what the speed limit is. Enforcement measures involve active police patrol and monitoring to cite drivers who do not comply with posted speed limits.
The Third "E," Engineering, changes the profile of the roadway with physical devices such as humps and circles and is the “Traffic Calming” component of the NTMP.
Traffic calming begins with an engineering evaluation of traffic speed and volume on any given street. If a street is not eligible for an Engineering solution based on the evaluation, but still warrants some response to speed and volume, we implement an Education and Enforcement solution at the discretion of Public Works.
Traffic calming measures are intended to slow down and discourage through traffic on residential streets, while keeping our neighborhoods accessible to police, fire, ambulance service. When appropriately implemented, traffic calming measures are effective and self-enforcing. Read all about the “Engineering E” in Traffic Calming.
What You Can Do
We encourage you to take the time to familiarize yourself with the Neighborhood Traffic Management Program if you are concerned about speeding or traffic volume on your street. You can also sign up for emails about the Sustainability and Infrastructure Commission for updates when transportation projects are on the agenda.
Traffic Forums and Traffic Action Plans
In Fall 2015, the City Council directed Public Works staff to develop an outreach program to gather input from City neighborhoods regarding their traffic safety concerns. As a result, the City of San Mateo held 10 citywide traffic forum meetings between January and May of 2016. City staff has now completed twelve Traffic Action Plans for participating neighborhoods. These Traffic Action Plans utilized each neighborhood's top concerns and made recommendations to address them. Read more about the Traffic Action Plan process.