Letter: Digital Signs Need Proper Messaging


Kudos to Mark Foley’s letter regarding the digital signs used by the City of Laguna Beach. His message is on point. To expand this a bit, the City always seems to blame Caltrans regarding issues with Coast Highway and Laguna Canyon Road.

The bottom line is that our police department and City leaders need to step up and take responsibility. The digital signs need proper messaging – not messaging identified by Mr. Foley and such silly things as messaging a driver to “enjoy the view.” Let’s have drivers focus on the road, pedestrians, cyclists and traffic.

Let’s see the City, police department, and the state collaborate to create a traffic plan that expedites traffic flow safely by implementing such concepts as synchronizing the signals, expanding the creation and enforcement of “walk” and “don’t walk intersections”, increase traffic enforcement especially in the areas of inattentive drivers such as the use of cell phones while driving, failing to signal before turning, illegally tinted front door windows, speeding, and failure to stop at posted stop signs-including cyclists. All of these positively impact and promote a safer environment for pedestrians, cyclists, and the flow of traffic. These programs are “best practices” in law enforcement and traffic engineering. If these “best practices” are implemented, they will reduce traffic density, create safer pedestrian movement while connected to the overall traffic plan, reduce sudden and unsafe turning and braking, and increase visibility for drivers as illegally tinted windows significantly inhibit the driver’s outward visibility during darkness, and the overall reduction of traffic collisions.

The traffic problem and unsafe driving are the elephants in the room in Laguna Beach. We just had elections, and it is past due to fix or significantly improve these unsafe conditions.  

John Jenal, Laguna Beach

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  1. To manage visitor and resident mobility, Laguna Beach adopted a car-centric urban plan to receive visitors, and to facilitate resident’s vehicle trips to destinations demanded by jobs and schools outside Laguna Beach. Trips made by pedestrians, cyclists, and transit riders were neither counted nor valued in the greater mobility calculus.

    Roads are for moving vehicles quickly, streets are for quiet neighborhoods and where businesses generate local community wealth. Roads reduce delay times to destinations but destroy the value of local space due to high speeds, streets preserve a sense of place and welcome slow vehicles because higher speeds destroy the value of place. That’s what happened to South Coast Highway and Laguna Canyon Road, our streets and roads became Stroads.

    So how do we preserve our sense of place while defending a destination ? For road safety recommendations, see https://lagunastreets.blogspot.com/2022/12/lagunas-roads-and-stoads.html


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