San Jose trail upgrades coming this year

The city of San Jose, California has one of the largest urban trail networks in the nation, with over 50 miles of trails open to the public. Several “core” trails — Guadalupe River, Coyote Creek and Highway 87 Bikeway — extend for several miles and are suitable for commuters as well as recreational use.

Guadalupe River Trail detour

A number of trail improvement projects are funded. Here’s what to look for over the next year or two.

  • Guadalupe Trail at Tasman Drive. The Guadalupe River Trail (GRT) is perpetually damp where it crosses underneath Tasman Drive. Even very minor rainfall results in flooding at this location The city will replace the ramps leading to this undercrossing and elevate the undercrossing itself so it’s less likely to flood. This project should go out to bid this month. Construction scheduled to begin June 2014 with completion by September 2014.
  • Guadalupe River Trail @ Chynoweth Avenue. Minor fence and signage work at Chynoweth Avenue to guide trail users to the on-street bikeway & not across sidewalk.
  • Highway 87 bikeway. New mileage markers and signage installed recently. Fence repairs and other “housekeeping” accomplished.
  • Lower Silver Creek Trail. Construction underway to complete trail through Capitol Park, linking Dobern Avenue with Story Road.
  • Penitencia Creek Trail – Nobel to Dorel. Seeking permits to build the trail, with unique boardwalk segments, from Noble Ave to Dorel Drive.
  • Mammoth Art. The “Mammoth” public art piece is under construction and will be installed near Trimble Road (I presume along the Guadalupe River Trail where Lupe the Mammoth was discovered?)
  • Milemarkers on several San Jose trails. Installation underway for milestone markers and remove existing call boxes along several city trails such as Penitencia Creek trail, Coyote Creek trail, Guadalupe Creek trail, Saratoga Creek trail, Hwy 237 bikeway trail and Silver Creek trails. The quarter-mile markers are for use by people calling in to 911.


Road on gravel Pandas

Future projects

  • Coyote Creek Trail between Tasman and Montague. The city plans to pave this portion of the Coyote Creek Trail and is currently seeking grant funding for this project.
  • Guadalupe River Trail connections south of Downtown. These connections to connect the GRT from downtown south to Blossom Hill are planned and partially funded, but must await flood control work by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Santa Clara Valley Water District.
  • Coyote Creek Singleton Road crossing. The city plans to replace the existing in-channel crossing with a pedestrian bridge.
  • Chynoweth Avenue Pedestrian Bridge. Awaiting a developer contribution to support Feasibility Study for new ped bridge to align with Chynoweth Ave.
  • Coyote Creek Trail: Story Road to Selma Olinder Park. 95% plans expected by March for Story to Selma Olinder Park, funds in place for future construction.
  • Coyote Creek Trail: Story Road to Phelan Avenue. Design work just getting underway for future trail from Story Rd to Phelan Ave, linking to Happy Hollow Park via bridge.
  • Bay Trail. The San Francisco Bay Trail is undeveloped in San Jose. Plans and environmental review for the 1.1 mile “Reach 9” of the Bay Trail through Alviso are complete. This includes a 540 foot bridge across Alviso Slough. San Jose Parks currently seeking funding for this project. This reach will connect the Guadalupe River Trail, the Highway 237 bike path and the Sunnyvale portion of the Bay Trail together.
  • Guadalupe River Trail at Coleman Road. This is Coleman Road in South San Jose, not Coleman Avenue near the airport. Design work underway for second undercrossing in south San Jose at Coleman Rd, supporting walking route at Lake Almaden. Construction anticipated to begin summer 2015.
  • Los Alamitos Creek Trail @ Harry Road. Design work nearly complete to extend the trail 200 feet so it reaches Harry Road / McKean Road.
  • Lower Silver Creek Trail. Design work just getting started for paved trail from Alum Rock Avenue to Dobern Avenue (near Highway 680).
  • Penitencia Creek Trail. Kicking off design work with VTA next week to extend trail from King Road to BART. Proposed trail will cross King Road, connect to BART station and a future “Flea Market Trail.”
  • Three Creeks Trail. Producing Master Plan for Parks & Rec Commission review in March and Council review in April.


  1. •Penitencia Creek Trail. Kicking off design work with VTA next week to extend trail from King Road to BART. Proposed trail will cross King Road, connect to BART station and a future “Flea Market Trail.”

    Great! What about Jackson to King? The current trail ends at jackson, though it extends a little through penetencia county park to maybury. we should have a new trail from Jackson to king on the other side of the park, avoiding maybury. Then complete coyote creek trail under 101!?

    Noble to Dorel should be much lower priority. Especially a boardwalk!? Make a Bike lane on penetencia creek up toward alum rock?

  2. The “Flea Market Trail” is the part that will connect the BART station with Coyote Creek Trail. Coyote Creek will go under 101 between about Mabury and McKee Road as part of the planned extension to Story Road. Before the city can do any work to extend Coyote Creek they have to wait for Santa Clara Valley Water District to complete their planned flood control projects. I don’t know what the time table is for that.

    King to Jackson is planned as “Reach 6” of the trail. I don’t believe this is funded. Plans for this are here. Note that this Master Plan was developed over a decade ago. I believe the city is still waiting for SCVWD to construct their planned improvements.

    In San Jose as in most places, the squeaky wheel gets the grease. The next San Jose Parks Commission meeting takes place Wednesday night, 5:30 PM at City Hall. There’s nothing related to trail work on the agenda, but members of the public are free to have your say during the “Public Comment” time at the beginning of the meeting. You might want to just watch a meeting the first time you go just to see how things operate. Letters written to the Commission also become part of the public record, and commission members do pay attention when people bring up matters that are important to them.

  3. Thanks for compiling this. The Tasman fix is great. Last week’s millimetric rain caused it to flood, so it’s clearly needed.

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