This is the summary of the news from the New Encinitas Network meeting last Thursday:
The California Coastal Commission issued a blistering 28-page response to the City of Encinitas that found the North Coast Hwy 101 Streetscape project to be in serious violation of the State of California Coastal Act. Ironically two dozen planning staffers have been forced out of the City of Encinitas in the past 18 months because they essentially refused to put their signatures on this plan for legal and safety reasons, as well as the CCC report makes crystal clear that the Streetscape project is designed to stop thru traffic, affecting the rights of California residents and visitors the ability to access North County beaches. The City submitted for an extension of time to cook up more numbers at a the Coastal Commission's September hearing in Ft. Bragg, Northern California and will try again at the next hearing, Thursday October 11, at the Wyndham San Diego Bayside, 1355 North Harbor Drive, San Diego.
The City Council (with the exception of Mark Muir) has directed planning staff to hire out the creation of a redesign of El Camino Real. The plan removes one vehicle travel lane in both the North and South direction between Encinitas and Leucadia Boulevard in order to make room for two 8-foot wide bike lanes replacing the outer vehicle driving lanes. The remaining two vehicle travel lanes are to be reduced from 14 feet in width to 10 feet in width. Bear in mind that the Encinitas Fire Department's hook and ladder trucks are 11 feet wide... This proposal also includes the implementation of a "staggered" pedestrian crosswalk that will be located between Via Moleno and Encinitas Boulevard that will be an unsafe pedestrian controlled sidewalk that strands pedestrians on the shrub-centered median strip. This will cause the stacking of traffic, endangering drivers at the stopped cars as accelerating drivers turning onto El Camino Real from Encinitas Blvd try to beat the red light camera. Also, a 6-Way "Continental" crosswalk will be located on Mountain Vista and El Camino Real. To date there has been no public discussion concerning the lane dieting, lane reduction, the two new bike lanes and the two potentially unsafe pedestrian crossing, the combination of which will dramatically increase traffic gridlock, carbon exhaust emissions and safety hazards for drivers and pedestrians. Reduction of vehicle access to businesses along Camino Real will also reduce profits and city revenue. As the California Coastal Commission's oversight extends to the eastern border of El Camino Real, CCC's refutation of the North Coast Hwy 101 Streetscape project may help residents and commercial property owners fend off this radical redesign. The city staff engineer assigned to the El Camino redesign, Christopher Magdosku recently resigned and took a position with the City of Chino. STC Traffic, Inc. Carlsbad, CA is the consulting firm engaged to develop the plans.
Additionally, the powerful non-profits bordering Quail Gardens Drive recently hired former council member Lisa Shaffer to lobby her council friends to use citizen tax dollars to essentially privatize Quail Gardens Drive. This might shed light on why the City L-7 (9.8 acre property) was removed from the preferred properties that comprise the newest Housing Element Up-Zoning Measure U that the Council hopes to pass in the election 5 weeks from now.
The next Traffic and Public Safety Commission Meeting is scheduled for 5:30 PM Monday October 8 at City Hall. We should have as many concerned residents mustered there as we can to speak against the proposed radical redesign of El Camino Real.
Friday, October 5, 2018
Radical redesign of El Camino Real in the works?
From the Inbox: