Friday night’s wonderful Hospitality Night was our annual reminder of how much better Laguna would be if we closed the west end of Forest permanently to cars.
I don’t know anyone who thinks this is a bad idea, except one or two retailers clinging to an old paradigm. The failure of the Chamber’s valiant effort two summers ago was they simply tried too hard and made it into a party that disturbed the merchants, instead of a simple public square with planters, benches and cobblestone. Still, most people loved it.
Of course there are tons of excuses why this can’t be done: merchant protests, Coastal Commission, reduced parking, etc. But wouldn’t a pedestrian promenade, where our community can gather freely, restaurants can spill on to the sidewalks, and the eyesore and gridlock that now exists as a de facto parking lot is eliminated, enhance everyone’s life in our fair town?
If any public official really got behind this, I think the vast majority of this town would support them. And with some real creativity and cojones, it could be done.