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Snapshot — Downtown Transit Center, Pump Station Reconstruction, Events and more!!!

Posted on October 14, 2022

Snapshot en Español


Spotlight Photo

Coastal Cleanup

Volunteers at work on Coastal Cleanup Day!

Last Quiz Question

Congrats to Miguel Sanchez, for being the first to answer our latest Snapshot Quiz.  San Rafael, California’s sister city of “San Rafael del Norte,” is in Nicaragua. Congrats Miguel, and thanks for reading Snapshot. Be sure to check out this edition’s quiz below and be the first to answer!!

San Rafael City News

Council to Consider San Quentin Pump Station Reconstruction

On Monday October 17th, the San Rafael City Council will consider several resolutions related to the San Quentin Pump Station Reconstruction project. These resolutions include awarding of the construction contract and the professional services agreements for construction management and support services. The existing pump station was constructed in 1972 and is located in the saltwater marsh wetland and detention pond behind Target and Home Depot off Shoreline Parkway. After 50 years of operation, the pump station is beyond its useful life and needs to be replaced.  The project will demolish the existing pump station and construct a new one with higher flow capacity to help prepare the city for the anticipated effects of climate change including larger storm events and rising sea levels.

Read the Staff Report here.

Downtown Transit Center Relocation

At the October 17th, City Council meeting, the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway, and Transportation District (Golden Gate Transit, or “Bridge District”) will provide an update on the Transit Center Relocation Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR).

The current transit center has been affected by the extension of the Sonoma Marin Area Rail Transit (SMART) system to Larkspur and several government agencies partnered to identify a new transit center site and configuration that will provide for the current and future mobility needs of San Rafael and Marin County. To address this need, the Bridge District began a multi-year process to develop a new transit center for San Rafael, and on August 11, 2021, released a DEIR for public review. On October 11, 2021, the City provided written comments asking for further analysis and over the past year, City staff have worked with the Bridge District staff regarding those comments. At the October 17th City Council meeting, the Bridge District will provide a presentation summarizing their response to comments and the project in general. The City expects the Bridge District to release a written response to comments document and a Final EIR for a 30-day public review as soon as October 18th.

Read the Staff Report here.

The Great Shakeout Earthquake Drill 2022

On October 17th, the City Council will share a proclamation in support of the Great Shakeout Earthquake Drill, which will take place this year on October 20th at 10:20 am.  Initially started in California, The Great Shakeout has evolved as an annual international campaign to promote earthquake preparedness by encouraging individuals at home, school, and work to partake in a synchronized drill and practice “Drop, Cover and Hold.”

In Marin, the City of San Rafael Office of Emergency Services (OES) is partnering with community organizations and local government stakeholders to promote the Great Shakeout and enhance community awareness on the importance of earthquake preparedness.  The City is also taking this opportunity to test internal emergency alert and communication protocols ahead of a disaster.

All San Rafael residents are encouraged to partake and learn more about this year’s Great Shakeout Earthquake Drill by registering via

Read the Proclamation here.

Leaf Blower Ordinance

On July 18, 2022, the City Council passed an ordinance to regulate the operation of gas-powered leaf blowers within city limits. Resident concerns varied from noise to environmental pollution caused by gas-powered leaf blowers.

As of October 1st, 2022, the following regulations apply to the operation of leaf blowers within city limits:

  1. Hours of operation:
    Property type Monday to Friday Weekends and Holidays 
    Residential 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
    Non-residential 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
  2. Blowing of debris: No person may deposit dirt, dust, leaves, grass clippings, trimmings, green waste, solid waste, or debris onto a neighboring property or into streets, gutters, or storm drains within city limits.
  3. Prohibition of gas-powered leaf blowers: It is unlawful for any person to operate or authorize, permit, or direct another who engages in the operation of any gas-powered leaf blower within city limits.

More information on the City’s leaf blower ordinance can be found here.

San Rafael’s 2022 Slurry Seal Program

Phase II and III of the City of San Rafael’s 2022 slurry seal program will run from Sunday, October 9th to Sunday, October 16th. Affected roads will be closed between 7 a.m. and 5 p.m. Parking will not be possible on the treatment day, but one-way traffic will be accommodated on most roads. These phases will focus on the Canal neighborhood, Bret Harte neighborhood, and Downtown (Fourth, Octavia, and C Streets). Sunday work will occur in the Canal commercial district to ensure minimal disruption to businesses.

For more details about the slurry seal program, as well as a map of the specific roads to be treated, please click here. For a Spanish language version of the project information website, click here. Since some roads may reopen well before 5 p.m., be sure to follow us on Twitter @SanRafaelSlurry.

Third Street Improvements   

  • During this week (October 10 – 14):
    • Crews will replace curb ramps and sidewalk sections at the intersection of Second Street and Shaver Street and Third Street and Shaver Street. This work will require sidewalk closures on Shaver Street between Second Street and Third Street.
    • Crews will complete the construction of a storm drainpipe and catch basins at the corner of Third Street and Shaver Street.
    • Crews will erect poles for streetlights and signal lights at Second Street and Shaver Street. This work will require a lane closure on Shaver Street at Second Street. 
    • Crews will pour foundations for streetlights and signal lights at Second Street and G Street.   This work will require a lane closure on Second Street at G Street.
    • Sanitary sewer rehabilitation: Crews will continue installing new sewer pipe and laterals by open trench method on G St. This work will require a street closure on G Street between Second Street and Fourth Street.
    • Sanitary sewer rehabilitation: Crews will begin installing new sewer pipe and laterals, by open trench method on Second Street. This work will require a lane closure on Second Street between Hayes and Shaver Streets.


    • From October 10, 2022, to October 14, 2022, PG&E will be relocating electrical lines on Second Street from Fourth Street to Miramar Avenue. This work will require a lane closure on Second Street between the intersection of Fourth Street to East Street (see map below).
    • The stairway from Second Street Street to Jessup Street (south of Ida) is closed.
    • For the Lane Shift on Second Street, the posted speed limit is 25 mph, drivers should be aware of changed conditions and be alert.
    • Traffic Controls (temporary signs, message boards, traffic cones, delineators and detour signs) will placed to direct motorists through the work area.
    • Curb parking spaces will be marked “No Parking.”

The daytime hours of work will be from 6 am to 6 pm, with lane closures from 6 am to 3 pm on Third Street and Second Street westbound. Lane closures will also be in effect from 9 am to 6 pm on Second Street eastbound.


COVID-19 Updates

As COVID-19 remains a part of our everyday lives, it is important to remember that the possibility of exposure to COVID-19 during gatherings remains high. Please remain diligent against the spread of COVID-19 through social distancing, masking, and testing whenever possible.

According to the Marin County Department of Public Health, as of October 7th, Marin County has 193 “Active Cases” (cases confirmed in the previous 10 days) bringing the total confirmed cumulative cases to 41,741 since March 2020. These numbers continue to highlight the remaining threat of COVID-19 in our communities, and the need for all community members to remain diligent in their efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Please follow the links below regarding the appropriate steps to follow if:  

COVID-19 booster shots and vaccination appointments continue to be offered at all Marin vaccine clinics. If you need transportation assistance to get vaccinated, please visit the following links about Lyft’s Vaccine Access Program and GoGoGrandparent. As always, if you are experiencing any COVID-19 like symptoms, please get tested as soon as possible, even if you are fully vaccinated.

TALES OF THE CITY— Pickleweed Park Movie Night

Movie Night

City of San Rafael staff from several departments including Community Development, Public Works, Library & Recreation, City Manager’s Office, Sustainability, Office of Emergency Services, Fire, and Police attended the recent movie night at Pickleweed Park. City staff partnered with several community stakeholders to provide updates on recent projects and efforts in the Canal neighborhood. The event also included Canal Mini Soccer sign-ups, art projects, music, snacks, and a fire truck for an evening of information and fun!

At the Last Council Meeting on October 3rd, 2022

Beginning with the April 18th City Council meeting, the City Council has returned to in-person meetings combined with a virtual real-time public comment on agenda items.

At the October 3rd, City Council Meeting, the Council:

  • Held open time for public expression
  • Heard City Manager and Councilmember reports
  • Approved consent calendar items
  • Adopted ordinance on “Streetaries” Outdoor Eating Areas Ordinance
  • Passed a resolution for City of San Rafael Canal Maintenance Dredging agreement

City Council meetings are held every first and third Monday of the month. City Council meetings that fall on a holiday are rescheduled for the following Tuesday.


Community Conversations

Fall Community Conversations are upon us! Like in past conversations, these will be chaired by the Mayor and Councilmembers and will prioritize community-oriented discussions that welcome input from all members and perspectives of the San Rafael community. There will be City wide updates, but we encourage residents to bring their questions and get to know their Council. We look forward to hearing from you and hope you will be able to join us at one of the times/locations. Click here for details.

Eyes Up, Marin

Let’s Make our Streets Safer for Everyone! From mid-October through the end of November, you’ll see bright and colorful banners and lawn signs popping up all over Marin asking people to keep their “Eyes Up” and be alert.  These signs will be asking drivers to slow down, watch when turning and look for pedestrians in the crosswalk; bicyclists to yield to pedestrians and to follow the rules of the road; and pedestrians to pay attention when crossing the street.

These messages will also show up in your social media feeds and you can find them here. Please share with your friends, family, and co-workers! The Eyes Up, Marin Campaign is part of the Street Smarts Program and Safe Routes to Schools, locally funded programs of the Transportation Authority of Marin.

Trick-Or-Treat on Fourth Street!

Saturday, October 29th, 2022, 1 pm -3 pm

Enjoy a family-friendly way to celebrate Halloween! Fourth Street merchants will be welcoming kids and families on Saturday October 29th from 1pm-3pm.  Dress up, bring a bag, and get ready for some treats (or tricks)! Look for the “Participating Businesses” sign in the window for some treats! Don’t miss the Pet Costume Contest sponsored by Woodlands Pets Food & Treats in the Plaza from 12:30pm-1:30pm. Enjoy spooky live music performed by the Marin Girls Chorus in the plaza from 2pm-2:30pm!

Election Day

Tuesday, November 8th

The November 8th election is fast approaching. Links to vote centers and drop boxes, including maps can be found here. Ballots may be returned by mail or dropped at any Vote Center or Official Drop Box.

Chipper Days

The MWPA Chipper Day program is proud to announce that it will be offering additional Chipper Days to Marin County residents this fall. The additional Chipper Days will begin on Monday, October 31st and run through the end of November.

As always, reservations are required to participate, and all the normal rules and guidelines apply. To find your Chipper Day event and make a reservation, click here.

Dia de los Muertos

Participate in this year’s 34th annual Dia de los Muertos celebration by building an altar in the Downtown San Rafael business window, in a City Hall lobby window or at the community celebration on November 5th at the Albert J, Boro Community Center. Complete an application online or reach out to

Clipper START survey

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is working to evaluate the Clipper START program, a means-based transit fare pilot program that provides discounted fares on twenty-one Bay Area transit services to eligible individuals 18-64 years old.

Your input is vital as MTC and its 21 transit agency partners will be taking action early 2023 on the future of the pilot. The Clipper START survey takes five (5) minutes to completed and can be found here.


How did Pickleweed Park get its name?


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