Years of community planning and nearly a year of construction have culminated in the completion of the San Pablo Dam Road Walkability Project. Completion of this Contra Costa County project helps make downtown El Sobrante a more pedestrian friendly town center, transforming the community by providing new and expanded disability accessible sidewalks, new trees and landscape planters, plus new bus benches and historical markers.
The new downtown environment is designed to improve economic activity, including shopping and dining, along San Pablo Dam Road.
The project includes about three-fourths of a mile of combined length of sidewalk along the north and south sides of San Pablo Dam Road between Appian Way and El Portal Drive.
The project relocates four bus stops to improve transit access. Expenditure of $2.3 million in local transportation sales tax revenues and local county road funds made these improvements possible, including $1.4 million from the Transportation for Livable Communities Grant through Measure J, a county transportation tax approved by voters in 2004, and $900,000 came from local county road maintenance funds. More than a dozen El Sobrante businesses have agreed to adopt a landscaping planter to brighten their entrances. The county is providing the planter and landscaping, while the business owners water and care for the plants. Detailed planning for the project began in 2011, but the overall vision and community-based efforts stem from business and resident interest in improving the downtown.