Seeing Red Over a Signal



Emerald Bay’s leadership has railroaded their community, Caltrans and now Laguna Beach’s City Council into accepting a traffic light and a grandiose entrance to Emerald Bay.  They have already spent over $1 million to buy this traffic light that they will pay for because Caltrans does not believe it is necessary.

Here we have lobbyists in action and democracy failing.  The community of Emerald Bay it seems is not allowed to vote on whether they want the signal because it is a safety issue.  Our city council is spending $15,000 to get a person to decide if the rear end collisions caused on Coast Highway by both north and south bound cars moving fast around blind corners to find a red light with traffic backed up is worth the risk to allow the convenience of a safer main gate exit for Emerald residents when they currently have two other means of safer exit available to them.

I live on Oak Street.  Our cross walk at Coast Highway is deadly.  Maybe I should get my neighbors to buy a light for us. Why should I have to walk to the Cress Street light or Thalia to make a safe crossing?  I want my light where it’s convenient.  Who cares if it clogs traffic and is considered unnecessary by Caltrans planners?  Everyone in Laguna Beach who wants to keep Coast Highway coming into Laguna from Crystal Cove in its current serene curves and sense of nature had better email our city council to remind them who they represent.

Marni Magda, Laguna Beach

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  1. CALTRANS must conform to new federal legislation (DOT Deputy Directive 64) which states the roadways under CALTRANS jurisdiction must accommodate all roadway users equally, walkers, bikers, transit buses and car drivers and do so safely. To accomplish that on Coast Highway and Laguna Canyon Road, CALTRANS must use traffic calming measures to achieve balanced mobility between all modes of transportation. Traffic calming measures removes cars from the roadway and slows vehicle speeds to make cars more compatible with slower moving traffic on the roadway. Traffic calming is a design element of Complete Streets Policy being adopted in cities nationwide. Our city government has largely allowed CALTRANS to do what they want, effectively tri-secting the town by two freeways. Until city government takes control of those freeways, the town will be at the mercy of CALTRANS and their decision makers that favour cars over residents.


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