I am disappointed with recent remarks made by Supervisor Thomas F. Riley regarding again seeking state Coastal Commission approval on widening California 133, Laguna Canyon Road.
The state Department of Transportation had the right to appeal February's commission decision, which overruled the road's widening but did not within the 30-day appeal limit. In fact, subsequent to the finding, and as a result of the commission's recognition of sensible safety improvements outlined and urged by the Laguna Canyon Conservancy, city officials and members of the conservancy met with Keith McKean, Caltrans' district director.
It was the first time a genuinely constructive meeting had ever taken place. Citizens indeed urge Caltrans to swiftly implement many safety precautions including light reflectors around the curve at Big Bend, cleaning and improving road shoulders, paving portions which are in disrepair, installing a traffic signal at Canyon Acres Drive and increased warning signs along the scenic and winding highway.
Many accidents might have been averted if Caltrans had fulfilled safety concerns long before now. However, as coastal commissioners astutely pointed out, the state transportation agency's primary agenda appeared to be an acute desire to increase capacity along the east/west coastal access. Sadly, it appeared, safety was but secondary issue.