Point Loma Imbroglio Continues Over “Bogus” Stop Signs After Peninsula Planners’ Compromise

by on May 17, 2013 · 1 comment

in Civil Disobedience, Culture, Environment, Ocean Beach

stop sign pt loma

Point Loma Planners’ Recommendation That “Bogus” Signs Be Replaced and Official Signs Removed Continues to Split Local Community

CBS8  reports that the Peninsula Planning Committee’s decision last night – May 16th – to find a compromise on the “bogus” stop signs continues to divide and rile the local hilltop community in Point Loma.

The Committee voted 4 to 3 to send a recommendation to Councilmember Faulconer’s office that the controversial stop signs that appeared and installed by anonymous parties, outside of city regulations, will be replaced – there’s 2 of them – and that 3 official stop signs in the area be removed.

The reportedly “packed crowd” was disappointed with the final vote during the planners regular monthly meeting at the Point Loma Library, with neither side in the debate/ issue satisfied. Will Scott, a local neighbor who favored the new stop signs, was quoted:

 “We’re neither [excited or upset]. This recommendation was clearly a compromise.”

 Another supporter of the bogus signs and who lives near one of them, Tess Maloney, was also quoted:

“I absolutely feel it’s safer for everybody in the neighborhood since they’ve put the stop signs in.”

 But another local resident and opponent of the un-official signs, Bob Sevrens said:

“The stop sign here was actually a yield sign before vigilantes took down the yield sign and put up a stop sign in the middle of the night.”

He left the hearing fuming and stated:

“You don’t reward illegal behavior which is what this board did tonight.”

The Planning Committee had been directed to come up with a solution for the problem and send Faulconer a recommendation.  Faulconer in turn is supposed to send it to Mayor Filner. No specific timetable was set.  Several Committee members recused themselves from the final vote for a number of reasons, including inexperience with the issue.

CBS8 reported:

The vote was not what many in attendance were expecting. Some wanted the new signs to be replaced with the yield signs that once stood in their place, while others wanted the new, amateur signs to stay up.

Speeding drivers have been a concern with a particular Point Loma neighborhood since at least 2000. … Another group of residents feels the additional stop signs pose additional dangers for drivers unaccustomed to seeing them. … Residents say the stop signs were likely put up after some grew tired of waiting for the city to address an issue with speeding drivers along a sharp curve near Jennings Street.

There are currently five stop signs within a 150-foot radius near Jennings Street at Albion Street and Silvergate Avenue.

 Here is the OB Rag report on the issue from April 18, 2013:

Two bogus stop signs have been discovered in the tony neighborhood of southern Point Loma, near the Point Loma campus of Nazarene University. In July, 2012, a stop sign appeared on Jennings Street.  The counterfeit signs have many supporters among local residents, and even the City signed off (no pun intended) on one of them – but, not everyone is happy.

Residents  along Jennings at Albion Street and Silvergate Avenue are divided on the issue. Some say the bogus signs have made their neighborhood more safer for pedestrians, children, and walkers.

And some of them have been complaining to the City about traffic speeding through their ritzy neighborhood for over a decade.   In fact, residents in 2000 asked the City to do something and allow stop signs, but the City declined, and installed a “Yield” sign.   Residents also asked the City again later in 2000, and also in early 2001, and city staff deemed stop signs unnecessary.  …

A stop sign then appeared in July. And then another.  … At the time that the bogus signs were discovered, the City took one out and replaced it with the prior yield sign.  Residents jumped into action and contacted Councilmember Faulconer’s office, asking that he assist them in getting the City to return the stop sign.  …

But others are not happy.  A group feels that the City, by okaying the counterfeit signs after-the-fact, has approved of the removal of its yellow yield sign and its replacement – all based on wrong facts.  … The issue of the stop signs went to the local Point Loma planning group, called the Peninsula Planning Committee.  Removing stop signs is illegal, but City policy allows for such signs if the local planning group approves them and they also get the okay from a council member.

And in January, the Peninsula Community Planning Group voted in favor of the stop sign.  Faulconer also gave his approval.

Yet those local residents who oppose the stop signs claim that the Councilman and the Point Loma planners were ignorant of important points.  They claim that a petition that was circulated around and then presented to authorities with a hundred signatures actually included less than 50 locals – with most not living in the area.   They also allege that Faulconer’s office and the planners didn’t have the correct info on who actually installed the signs.

Faulconer responded this week and stated that his office has asked the Peninsula Planning Committee to look at the issue again in May. His office made this statement:

“The District 2 office only recently became aware of deficiencies in the stop sign petition that could cause some to question whether enough neighbors had been included in the decision making process. That is one of the reasons our office is calling for the Peninsula Community Planning Board to hold a new hearing to ensure all neighbors can have a voice on this quality of life issue.”

Sources of story: U-T San Diego and 7San Diego

And this brings us back to what happened last night at the Peninsula Board.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

avatar Doug May 17, 2013 at 4:56 pm

700,000 auto crashes occur annually at stop signs. They are a disaster for the environment, quality of life, and health. Our fair city allows anyone to complain and the city will install a stop sign. There is no mechanism to have a stop sign removed. More stop signs translate into more accidents for many reasons. One is stress. Having to stop and start twenty times on the way to work is stressful. Most drivers give up and just run them. Accidents and deaths increase. Holland is dismantling almost all traffic signs and is getting a lower accident rate.
Wear and tear on autos and pollution is staggering. A single four-way stop can cost 200 gallons of gas a day. Brake linings wear and release toxic copper and asbestos dust. When a car accelerates it is at maximum emissions – NOx and HC.

Most cities recognize that over-use of stop signs is very dangerous. San Diego is harming its citizens by overuse of these devices. At some point a law firm will realize what San Diego has inflicted on its citizens and will sue the city for hundreds of millions. Read the facts.

http://www.fcgov.com/traffic/pdf/ntsp-stop.pdf
http://seriousaccidents.com/legal-advice/top-causes-of-car-accidents/running-stop-signs/
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14733981
http://www.cityofpsl.com/traffic/stop-signs.html

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