A rare “silver lining” of the COVID-19 crisis is a respite from the huge volume of day tripper tourists and traffic clogging our town. Apart from the Village, this is especially noticeable in South Laguna where over the past few years large sections of PCH have become a dangerous circus of beach goers unloading their cars and obliviously marching en masse to beach access points only inches from heavy traffic moving at speeds of well over 40 mph.
A simple solution to the mess in South Laguna would be to make the current parking bans on PCH near Aliso Beach permanent. The parking ban should also be extended to the “residential” stretches from Nyes Place south to West Street and again from 5th Street to the city’s southern border just north of Crown Valley Parkway. In lieu of unwanted and dangerous street parking, dedicated bike lanes should be created, similar to those already in place in Dana Point, which would allow bicyclists to safely traverse the areas, namely the Ranch property and South Coast Hospital, where PCH is the only transportation lane.
Cities small and large are re-thinking bicycle transportation in light of the public’s desire for healthy activity and anxiety towards public transportation. Per a recent New York Times article (sales of bicycles are at record levels nationwide and forward thinking cities such as Seattle are permanently closing roads (20 miles!) in favor of dedicated bike paths.
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