University Avenue Revitalization

Project Goals


To improve the health and vitality of University Avenue by improving aesthetics, maximizing walkability and creating a unifying streetscape theme.

Project Overview


A study of the University Avenue corridor was conducted to determine the improvements necessary for the revitalization of University Avenue.  Community participation is a key component to the redevelopment of University Avenue. Numerous community meetings, public workshops, staff meetings, site investigations, and traffic studies were conducted to ensure that differing viewpoints are considered in project construction.  Summaries of the community meetings, handout materials and project concept maps from the public participation workshops are available for review by visiting the University Avenue folder in the on-line Document Center or by browsing the workshop links. 

Community Meetings and Exhibits


Phase I

In 2014 the City was awarded a $2.3 million grant from the State Water Resources Control Board Proposition 84. In 2015 the concept plans were updated following the grant award. Ten median segments were identified for improvements in the concept plans.  The available funding allowed a contract to be awarded to improve half of the medians from the concept plans in April of 2016. The project has since been completed with construction spanning from August 2016 through July of 2017.  

2015 Concept Plans                 Project Video

Phase II

Design of the Phase II Improvements to University Avenue and the West La Mesa area is expected to be completed by September of 2017. The project will enhance safety and mobility in the area by including: nearly five (5) miles of bicycle and pedestrian improvements, including major intersection work along University at Parks Avenue, Lowell Street, and Culbertson Avenue; the extension of Junior High Drive from Olive Avenue to Lowell Street, including parking and circulation improvements along the La Mesa Arts Academy frontage between Olive Avenue and Parks Avenue; two new lighted crosswalks at the new Lowell Street / Junior High Drive Intersection and mid-block location along University Avenue between Olive Avenue and Culbertson Avenue; new sidewalks along Olive Avenue; and resurfacing of the University Avenue corridor paired with high-visibility striping upgrades and bicycle lanes.  The improvements to Junior High Drive are being constructed to improve circulation and provide access to a new Boys and Girls Club to be constructed on the campus of the La Mesa Arts Academy.

Staff anticipates construction of the improvements to begin in 2017 and completed by fall of 2018.

A project map of the improvements is included through the following link: 

Project Improvement Map

Phase III

The City plans to apply for additional grant funds to replace more medians in the future as grants become available.