Q How is it possible that Morgan Hill is so arrogant not to turn on metering lights on Highway 101? That town slows down thousands of people 10 minutes or more every morning as a result. Is there any word on them fixing this?
A Oh, you and so many want to know.
Q I commute from Gilroy to San Jose. I start work at 7:30 a.m. but have to leave my house between 6 and 6:15 a.m. because 101 north starts to back up at Masten Avenue with bumper-to-bumper traffic all the way to Cochrane Road in Morgan Hill. ... Gary, we are going crazy trying to get through Morgan Hill. We are backed up to San Martin. How about the new metering lights in Morgan Hill? ... Why aren't the metering lights on for Tennant, Dunne and Cochrane avenues in Morgan Hill? Coming from Gilroy, the three-lane freeway opens into four lanes; and yet traffic coming through Morgan Hill is out of control. The metering lights need to be turned on because everyone is trying to get onto 101 at the same time. It doesn't work. ... Every morning it's soooo slow through here. Please, please, please give us some relief from the weekday morning crawl in Morgan Hill!
Joe Ray, Bill Harrison, Shannon Lewis, Minna Pintello, Dave Lim, Elisa Kuhl, Randy Brown and a few zillion more
A This isn't the city's fault. Meters have been installed in Morgan Hill but won't be turned on by Caltrans until onramp lights are installed from the San Benito County line to the 101-85 interchange in South San Jose. Construction could be under way this spring, but it may be late 2014 before they are working.
Q I just want to comment that when everyone has complained about issues with our roads, we do need to thank the state for the good things it does.
As I go from Hollister to San Jose on 101, I notice a lot of damage to the median barrier that was erected on 101 through the Morgan Hill/Gilroy areas, due to all of the head-on collisions that happened for a while.
It got me thinking, so one day I counted all of the crash points on the barrier from just before the 10th Street exit in Gilroy to Cochrane Road in Morgan Hill -- 18 hits to the barrier (at least 12 serious damage hits) that caused the barrier to buckle over. To me that means potentially at least 36 lives saved from head-on crashes. Not to mention if the cars were full of families and babies.
The powers that be got this one right. I commuted to Santa Clara with my son every day for seven years on this stretch, and once that barrier went up, I felt safer. Those hits prove it.
A Yes, they do. The median barrier was installed on 101 following a series of head-on crashes on nearby Highway 85 in the mid-1990s that led to a new policy mandating barriers on most state highways.
Q I think you answered this a few years ago, but I would like to know if this has changed. Will there ever be an offramp for northbound 101 onto 85 in South San Jose?
A Someday, perhaps, but there are no plans for one anytime soon.
Q My commute takes me from West San Jose to Cupertino and back. I get on Interstate 280 north at the Parkmoor Avenue onramp and then have just a few hundred feet to get across four lanes of traffic or else I'll end up on 880 or 17. The lanes I have to cross are often a combination of totally stopped and going 60-mph plus. It's a death trap. Is there anything that can be done?
A A couple of things. Metering lights have been installed northbound and could be working in a few weeks. Also, when the 280-880 interchange work ends in 2015 the exit lanes from north 280 to 880 and 17 will be realigned. This won't make your concerns go away, but the changes may ease conditions at the pinch points.
Go to Roadshow's expanded online presence at www.mercurynews.com/mr-roadshow and look for rules of the road, construction updates and favorite stories. Look for Gary Richards at Facebook.com/mr.roadshow or contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or 408-920-5335.