Charleston / Arastradero Corridor Project

Charleston/Arastradero Corridor

Project Description
The 2.3-mile Charleston-Arastradero Corridor is a heavily used, residential- arterial road, serving as an east-west connector for the southern section of Palo Alto. The corridor services 11 K-12 schools, several parks, shopping centers, community centers, senior living facilities, and a library. The project includes the installation of landscaped medians, curb extensions/bulb-outs, enhanced bicycle and pedestrian improvements, and traffic signal modifications consistent with the existing striping/roadway configuration.

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Project Map

Scope of Work
  The overall objective of the project is to address the needs of nearby residents and the surrounding community who have requested an improved corridor with more moderate vehicle speeds, safer conditions, and various vegetation improvements will be used to enhance the aesthetic quality of the corridor and treat stormwater.  
  The goals and benefits of the Charleston-Arastradero Corridor project include

Enhanced safety for K-12 students walking and biking to school and other corridor users;


Smoother traffic flow along the corridor;


Beautification of the streetscape; the project will add approximately 80 trees, shrubs, groundcover, grasses, and bioretention plants throughout the 37,000 square feet of landscaped elements.


Landscaped medians will improve safety for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other motorists from users making abrupt lane changes and dangerous turns. Pavement markings will help a driver’s awareness of pedestrians and bicyclists. To further protect bicyclists, the corridor will have a dedicated or buffered bike lane. More details on the streetscape improvements included in the project can be in the project FAQs.

Another key component of the Charleston-Arastradero Corridor Project is the upgrade of traffic signal equipment for increased controllability of signals. An adaptive traffic control system will also be implemented as a part of this project. It will optimize signal timings which will improve traffic flows. In addition to traffic signal modifications, a new traffic signal will be installed at Louis/Montrose and E. Charleston Road.

The Charleston-Arastradero project has been in the works for almost 15 years with significant stakeholder outreach and community engagement. The City Council approved the concepts for the corridor in 2015, and the Architectural Review Board approved the landscape plans in 2017. Federal grants fund part of the project, which requires a phased construction approach. Phase 1 includes the corridor section Arastradero Road between Foothill Expressway to Clemo Avenue. Phase 2 includes corridor section of West Charleston Road from Alma Street to Middlefield Road. Phase 3 of construction will be the remaining sections of the corridor between Los Palos Avenue to Alma Street and Middlefield Road to San Antonio Road.


In March 2018, the City hosted two open houses for the public to view the changes and learn more about the project and construction. City staff and consultants were available to answer questions. On May 21, 2018, City Council reviewed staff’s recommendation to approve construction contracts for Phase 1 and 2 of the Charleston/Arastradero Corridor Project.

On July 14, 2018, O’Grady Paving temporarily marked the streets with proposed concrete work, so the community could drive proposed improvements on the side streets. The City has been evaluating each of the intersections and has made changes appropriate based on community feedback.

Intersections that have design changes are:

  • Terman/Donald: northeast corner of Donald will be slightly reduced
  • Pomona: bulb-outs have been reduced by a foot on both sides
  • Coulombe: bulb-out has been reduced and an addition of dedicated right turn lane onto southbound Arastradero
  • Carlson: northeast corner radius has been reduced to accommodate larger vehicles/shuttles

After further community feedback, City staff reevaluated all intersections on the project and have made the appropriate changes. This document describes the process and locations of the bulb-out modifications.


This project will remove the equivalent of  over 6,700 tires from the waste stream by using Rubberized Hot Mix Asphalt for its roadway surfaces. Funded by CalRecycle.


 CalRecycle Logo  SB1 Rebuilding California Logo
Upcoming Meetings

No upcoming meetings are currently scheduled. Please see below for status updates.


Previous Meetings

  November 20, 2019 – Walkthrough at Los Altos – Hetch-Hetchy Bike Path
Approximately 40 community members attended the meeting and site walkthrough on Wednesday, November 20 to review the scope of the upcoming tree work. City staff explained the tree removals and maintenance work, described the City’s efforts to minimize the impacts to the trees, and answered questions from attendees. The work is described in the meeting’s handout.
  October 9, 2019 - Walkthrough at Los Altos – Hetch-Hetchy Bike Path

The City held a walk-through meeting at the SFPUC Los Altos-Hetch Hetchy bike path to discuss tree pruning along the path and why it is required.


May 21, 2018  Council Meeting

City Council reviewed staff's recommendation to approve construction contracts with O'Grady Paving for Phase 1 and 2 of the Charleston / Arastradero Road Corridor Project. 

March 27, 2018 – Open House at Gunn High School

The public was invited to learn more about the project and staff were available to answer questions. 

March 29, 2018 – Open House at Hoover Elementary

The public was invited to learn more about the project and staff were available to answer questions. 

Project Status





NOTE: Dates shown below are subject to change due to field conditions, inclement weather, and unforeseen circumstances. All project status dates listed are for 2020.


Phase 1

Paving of the Los Altos Hetch-Hetchy bike path is complete. The remaining concrete work on the bike path’s frontage is scheduled for  Wednesday, 3/04 to Wednesday, 3/11. Work hours are from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the weekdays and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, 3/07. This Detour Plan shows the work area and vehicular traffic routing on Arastradero Road. The Bike Path will be closed during this work and this pedestrian and bicycle detour plan will remain in effect 24/7 until work is complete.


Los Altos - Hetch-Hetchy Bike Detour Plan

Los Altos - Hetch Hetchy Vehicle Detour Plan 


Phase 1 Upcoming Work - Schedule to be confirmed

The contractor will be addressing punchlist items at various locations on the corridor from Clemo Avenue to Miranda Avenue.


Phase 2 Upcoming Work – Schedule to be confirmed 

The contractor will be addressing punchlist items at various locations on the corridor from Alma Street to Middlefield Road. The schedule is to be determined.


Phase 3

The Charleston-Arastradero Corridor Project – Phase 3 is currently in the stage of finalizing project plans and documents required for the planned work at the El Camino Real intersection. Construction of Phase 3 is anticipated to start late summer to early fall.


Other Projects on the Corridor

Phase 3 Communications may still be performing work around the Charleston-Arastradero Corridor project limits. The project is expanding CenturyLink's fiber optic network and upgrading the communications infrastructure in Palo Alto. This Project Map shows the path of work. Phase 3 has completed their underground work, but will need to return to perform concrete work around areas where they have trenched and potholed.


Hillview Expansion Project Map - In Effect 3/27

Phase 3 Communications Construction Notice

Project Documents

Construction Notice Flyer

"" Frequently Asked Questions - Charleston / Arastradero Corridor Project
  Charleston-Arastradero Corridor Revisions - September 7, 2018
  May 21, 2018 Staff Report ID# 9111
  Public Art Commission Staff Report: Charleston / Arastradero Corridor
  Project Storyboard Postcard
  Final Project Plans and Cut Sections
  City Council Staff Report #6070 (09-28-2015): Charleston-Arastradero Corridor Project
  Planning & Transportation Commission Staff Report #5690 (04-29-2015): Concept Plan Line Approvals for the Charleston/Arastradero Corridor Project
  65% Set of Layout and Planting Plans 
Architectural Review Board
"" July 2018 Formal ARB #3 Staff Report #9376
  Public Outreach Material for Architectural Review Board (ARB) Meeting - July 2017 (18 MB)
ARB Staff Report ID# 8073
Alternative Species for Plant Palette for Underground Utilities
Tree Conflicts with Underground Utilities
Environmental Documents
"" 2004 MND
CEQA Addendum
County Notice of Declaration
NEPA Clearance
Contact Information
  Public Works Engineering Services Division
   Project Manager: Young Tran,  

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