Safety improvements underway on Stockton’s Miracle Mile, $20M in more work planned

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

August marks three years since a 23-year-old Miracle Mile employee was hit and killed by a car in front of his workplace.

STOCKTON, Calif. — Safety improvements are finally underway along Stockton’s popular Miracle Mile shopping district almost three years after an employee of a business was hit and killed by a car.

The stretch of Pacific Avenue in front of Kevin Hernandez’s Miracle Mile business, Ave on the Mile, was blocked by construction crews and cones Thursday.

“It’s going to be a beautiful crosswalk from Baskin Robbins to Ave on the Mile,” said Hernandez. “It’s going to be more visible. There’s going to be lighting. The plans are great. It’s going to narrow a little bit to do, as I said earlier, some traffic calming.”

The city-funded construction project is now halfway done. Hernandez, whose business has been on the Mile for 15 years, described the project as long overdue.

“I’ve seen speeding cars, I’ve seen near misses, I’ve seen people get hit,” said Hernandez. “When you’re a business owner, you see the good, the bad and the ugly.”

The ugly came in August 2021 when a speeding pickup truck hit and killed 23-year-old employee Casey Bynum. The mission for the owners has been clear since then.

“I don’t want Casey’s name to go in vain,” said Hernandez. “I made a promise to a mom and a promise to my city and a promise to the community to get this done.”

Crosswalks aren’t the only part of the Miracle Mile to see major improvements. Nearly $20 million in state funding is on the way to help things such as lighting and even the nearby Caldwell Park. ABC10’s reporting following Bynum’s death led to the funding.

“Security and lighting was probably one of the most important things and, as you can see, it’s going to be awesome for the district to have lights strung across,” said Hernandez.  “It’s only going to get better.”

Hernandez was one of the members of the committee who decided how the millions would be used. The group held its final meeting last week, approving new ideas and sending a nearly 300-page plan to the city of Stockton.

The city still has to go through all the ideas and generate its own designs. They expect to begin accepting contracts with construction firms in the next six to eight months.

Hernandez and his fellow business owners can’t wait until the city does, even if it means some extra tractors and traffic cones in the meantime.

“This is for the greater good and there’s a future here and it’s just going to bring more people down to the Miracle Mile and their families,” said Hernandez. “Because they’re going to feel safer.”

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.