County of Marin - News Releases - Civic Center Drive Improvement Project

For Immediate Release
September 13, 2016

Key Dates Coming for Civic Center Drive Project

San Rafael corridor near Marin Center, SMART station being transformed

San Rafael, CA – A variety of construction activities associated with the County of Marin’s Civic Center Drive Improvement Project are underway or about to begin soon in San Rafael, including a scheduled power outage.

The construction zone on Civic Center Drive in the foreground and Marin Center in the backgroundThe roundabout in front of Marin Center is taking shape.

The temporary inconveniences are necessary to create a more seamless flow of traffic, both vehicular and human-powered, in a busy part of the Marin County Civic Center campus. The County project will help complete a long-term vision for the north side of the Civic Center campus and add aesthetic and functional improvements to the corridor.

Workers have dismantled the old intersection at Civic Center Drive and Peter Behr/Memorial drives and are building a single-lane roundabout to enhance flow and safety in the area. Beginning this week, one-way traffic is in effect on areas north of the bypass road to McInnis Parkway as crews install an underground stormwater system within the corridor. The work, overseen by the Marin County Department of Public Works (DPW), is expected to extend for at least two weeks. 

Contractor flagmen are controlling the traffic flow, and all travelers – drivers, cyclists and hikers – are advised to use extra caution in the area.  Further traffic impacts are anticipated when the paving of the roundabout starts near the end of September and the next sections of the project north of the roundabout undergo development.

Beginning the week of Monday, September 19, work will begin on road widening activities north of the railroad tracks near McInnis Parkway. The work will entail the construction of widening Civic Center Drive to the west (toward Highway 101), installation of curb/gutter/drainage improvements; and the addition of new medians on both sides of the train tracks. The work is anticipated to extend through the middle of October and will include the relocation of the train signals and gates. 

In addition, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. will work in the project area throughout the week. Its work will not directly impact traffic, but there will be a temporary power outage to the area from 9 p.m. Wednesday, September 14, through 6 a.m. Thursday morning, September 15. The outage primarily will impact Marin Center and some residential and commercial areas adjacent to the Civic Center campus. PG&E has indicated that it has notified all impacted parties. The outage is not scheduled to impact County employees at the nearby Marin County Civic Center.

The project includes accessible pedestrian and bicycle facilities that provide seamless connectivity between the Civic Center campus and the new Sonoma Marin Area Trail Transit (SMART) station located near the intersection of Civic Center Drive and McInnis Parkway.

There is continued vehicle access and parking for events at the Marin Center and Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium during the construction. The Thursday Farmers Market, which normally takes place in the Marin Center parking lot, has moved to the Northgate mall parking lot for the next few months. The Sunday Farmers Market is being held at its usual Civic Center parking lot location throughout construction.

Plans and specifications for the Civic Center Drive Improvement Project were approved by the Supervisors in June 2015. Work is expected to be completed by the end of 2016.

On DPW’s website, residents can find a video that summarizes the improvement project, an animated simulation of how the roundabout will work, an overhead map of the area, an overview about the effectiveness of roundabouts from the federal government, and many other documents.


Patrick Zuroske
Facilities Planning and Development Manager
Department of Public Works

3501 Civic Center Drive
Suite 304
San Rafael, CA 94913
(415) 473-2298
CRS Dial 711
Email: Patrick Zuroske
DPW Website