Company:
Orange County Public Works
Status:
Awarded
Awarded:
Other
Additional Files
Project Photo
Project Map with Safety Features v1
Project Map with Safety Features v2
Additional Information

Santiago Canyon Road Highway Safety Improvement Project

Project Location:

The project is located along Santiago Canyon Road in the eastern unincorporated portion of Orange County and adjacent to canyon communities such as Modjeska Canyon and Silverado Canyon.  The limits of the project extend from State Route 241 to Live Oak Canyon Road. Santiago Canyon Road serves as a route to popular destinations such as Irvine Lake, Limestone Canyon Regional Park, Red Rock Canyon, and Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park.

Project Description:

Santiago Canyon Road is a two-lane road classified as a primary arterial highway with rural characteristics. The travel lanes are generally 12-feet in width with bike lanes adjacent to the travel lanes. The alignment is curved with several steep grade changes. Numerous trees and utility poles are located along the sides of the road. The road has multiple intersections and driveways serving residences, local businesses, and recreational destinations.  The project involves implementing safety measures such as overlaying the road with high friction surface treatment, reflectors, a striped buffer zone for bicyclists, installation of rumble strips, installation of guardrails, and upgrading signage.

Project Justification:

The County routinely performs safety evaluations of its roadway network to identify high accident locations to develop and implement safety solutions to reduce collisions, thereby improving safety. Santiago Canyon Road has been identified by OC Public Works as a top safety priority. OC Public Works maintains a traffic collision database using reports provided by the California Highway Patrol.  In the early 2010s, there have been a total of 168 collisions on Santiago Canyon Road with nine collisions resulting in fatalities, 27 severe injuries, 41 visible injuries, 23 complaints of pain, and 68 property damage.  The assessment and evaluation of Santiago Canyon Road crash data revealed a clear and predominant pattern of drivers losing control of their vehicles and either leaving roadway and hitting objects or staying within the roadway, but overturning or sideswiping or crashing head-on with other vehicles.

The development of safety solutions was approached in a systematic manner by selecting a set of counter-measures that work together to address the prevalent pattern of accidents along the roadway. These counter-measure improvements will include installation of a high friction roadway pavement surface, reflectors, a striped buffer zone for bicyclists, installation of rumble strips, installation of guardrails, and up-to-date signage. 

Special Circumstances:

Due to the high accident rates along Santiago Canyon Road, interest groups such as the Orange County Bicycle Coalition, the California Highway Patrol, and communities in the Canyons took particular interest in the project.  Throughout the project development process OC Public Works engaged in constant communications to address Orange County Bicycle Coalition’s concerns and continuous coordination with the California Highway Patrol to provide traffic control throughout the construction process in order to prevent further accidents.

Project Attachments:

The project is federally funded with support from Caltrans.  Federal fund share equates to 76% of the project cost; the City of Lake Forest contributed 8% of the project cost; and the remaining cost is funded by the County of Orange.

Award Citation::

Santiago Canyon Road has been experiencing a high amount of accidents in the early 2010s.  To address these concerns, OC Public Works implemented safety features along Santiago Canyon Road to reduce the rate of accidents.

Suggested Award Summary:

The County routinely performs safety evaluations of its roadway network to identify high accident locations to develop and implement safety solutions to reduce collisions, thereby improving safety. Santiago Canyon Road has been identified by OC Public Works as a top safety priority. OC Public Works maintains a traffic collision database using reports provided by the California Highway Patrol.  In the early 2010s, there have been a total of 168 collisions on Santiago Canyon Road.  The development of safety solutions was approached in a systematic manner by selecting a set of counter-measures that work together to address the prevalent pattern of accidents along the roadway. These counter-measure improvements includes installation of a high friction roadway pavement surface, reflectors, a striped buffer zone for bicyclists, installation of rumble strips, installation of guardrails, and up-to-date signage.  The project was completed in early 2021.

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