The Great Debate Continues Over Reduction of Lanes and Parking for West Point Loma Blvd.

by on May 14, 2019 · 39 comments

in Ocean Beach

Section of West Point Loma Blvd.

A Response to Nicole Burgess’ Post on “Wonderful transformation for West Point Loma Blvd”

By Geoff Page

The subject of reducing West Point Loma Blvd. from four lanes to two lanes between Nimitz and Midway has been covered in several OB Rag pieces recently.  One such article was written by cycling advocate Nicole Burgess titled “A Wonderful Transformation for West Point Loma Blvd.”  Mrs. Burgess is a one-issue person if ever there was one.  I will say at the outset that I admire her energy and commitment to her cause.  Her constant promotion of cycling, at the expense of automobile traffic, is understandable because Mrs. Burgess does not drive.

I have witnessed her pushing cycling at planning board and town council meetings for several years.  Last year, she came before the Midway planning board promoting a plan to remove parking on the south side of Sports Arena from Midway to Kemper.  She said there were only about 20 spaces that would be removed for a bike path.  I am always skeptical when someone offers “facts” with no backup and say “only about” so I personally measured the parking area and found it was closer to 29 spaces than 20. That is a significant difference. Unfortunately for the Midway area, the planning board voted to approve the plan.  Why?

There are some subjects in San Diego that are sacrosanct, cycling being one and native plants being another.  If a person dares to offer any criticism about either subject, that person can be assured of a volley of negative commentary for not “getting it” to the point of condemnation.  The Midway board fell into this trap and voted to approve the plan with no input from anyone who might oppose losing the parking because to not approve the cyclists’ desires would have been, well, a sin.

The imprecise information Ms. Burgess offered the planning board resurfaced in her OB Rag article.  She stated,

“Speeds will be reduced but the average travel time through this corridor will be relatively the same (approximately a 4 second delay).” 

I immediately posted a comment asking for substantiation for this “fact” and Mrs. Burgess has not responded.  It is difficult to believe, to put it mildly, that a busy four-lane road could be reduced to two lanes and traffic would only suffer a four second delay.

As I noted in my article on the City’s presentation at the Peninsula Community Planning Board meeting, the city can’t be trusted.  They did a “study” of the parking along both sides of West Point Loma and declared it underutilized.  The problem was that they surveyed the north side from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. but only surveyed the south side from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 a,m.  When asked why, the ridiculous answer was that it was street sweeping day.  They said nothing about going back out another day to do a proper study, they just went with this skewed information. And, the usage for the few hours they surveyed the south side far outstripped usage on the north side.

I was at the PCPB meeting and I asked the city’s presenter about this, and true to the sanctity of cycling, an audience member turned to me, visibly irritated and criticized me for questioning this anomaly.  No one else in the room spoke up.  You won’t have many friends if you deign to question the cyclists.

Mrs. Burgess is responsible for another cycling related occurrence that I have to live with almost every day.  She went to the city’s traffic division some years ago and requested no right turns on red at Catalina and Voltaire, from any right turn, to make it safer for cyclists.  Remember, Mrs. Burgess does not drive.  The city came out and said only one turn justified the no right turn on red and that was from southbound Famosa onto westbound Voltaire.  So they put one in.  How this has ever been a benefit to cyclists is beyond me.

I tried to get the city to remove it.  Because I had fought the monstrosity that just finished being built to the east of Catalina, across from Wabaska, I had traffic accident data back to the early 90s.  One of the reasons the planning board opposed the project was traffic.  According to that data, there had never been an accident involving the right turn the city decided to restrict.  I’ve lived west of Catalina off Voltaire for 32 years and made that turn safely thousands of times.  Now, because of the sanctity of cycling, I find myself stuck at that light almost every time I pull up to it.

Ms. Burgess and the cyclists have advocated for all the “sharrows” and green pavement markings cropping up everywhere.  I never heard of any public discussion about where to place sharrows, the painted depictions of a bicycle with an arrow that indicate cyclists have as much right to the lane as cars do.  They just appear at the behest of the cycling community.  There are two problems with all of this.  The first is maintenance; the sharrows along Catalina Blvd., for example, were falling apart within a year or two.  The green paint will need constant maintenance to stay green.  The other problem is common sense.

The section of Voltaire Street from Sunset Cliffs to the beach contains slanted parking, something that was done years ago to increase available parking.  Driving that section of road is difficult because of vehicles that are longer than most and protrude into the travel lane.  This whole section of road got sharrows when a much quieter Muir Ave. parallels Voltaire one block away.  Now, if cyclists are on Voltaire, the cars have to slow to their speed to the cyclist’s pace.  But, of course, suggesting the cyclists take the alternate route one block away to accommodate traffic is heresy.  Same thing with Catalina Blvd. a two-lane major connector that is parallel to Venice and Santa Barbara.

Ms. Burgess said in her article:

“I will finally be able to safely ride my bike down West Point Loma Blvd to get ice cream at 31 Flavors.  And I can stop at Barons and Grocery Outlet for some groceries. And the next day, I might hit the bank and enjoy a yoga class.  A short bike ride to local businesses is a great amenity for all of us.”

I shop at Baron’s and used to take my kids to Baskins Robbins that are both in the same shopping center.  I never used West Point Loma.  Voltaire to Famosa to Worden to Bob St. to Barnard is much quieter and safer.  Ms. Burgess lives in my area.  And how many people have the time and physical ability to grocery shop at Baron’s every week on a bicycle?  Banking is done on-line anymore and there is a yoga studio on Voltaire a half block east of Catalina.

Ms. Burgess wrote: “The segment along West Point Loma Blvd from Nimitz Blvd to Sports Arena Blvd will be going on a “road diet” or shall we say it is being transformed to accommodate all users of the road.” No, let’s tell that like it really is, it is being “repurposed” to accommodate cyclists.

Mrs. Burgess wrote, “The reduction of lanes will create traffic calming to foster safer driving behaviors.”  This is an odd comment coming from a person who does not drive.  I would suggest the frustration this change will generate will lead to the opposite behavior.

Mrs. Burgess wrote:

“There are other benefits to the neighborhood, such as, home values will likely increase, parents can let their kids get to their neighborhood schools by foot or bike, and more people will be out and about visiting local business and being social.  This all creates a more vibrant, healthy, and enjoyable place to live, work, and play.”

Nothing was offered to substantiate the claim that home values will increase.  Kids can walk to school without this change, or bike if they wish because there are no schools along West Point Loma Blvd.  What evidence is there that more people will decide to go out and about and will be more social?  Where does that come from.  I find it amazing that this one change on this stretch of road will “creates a more vibrant, healthy, and enjoyable place to live, work, and play.”  Seems like this will be the panacea for everything.

Mrs. Burgess wrote:

“Just in time for summer, our neighbors to the east of Nimitz, can now safely hop on their bike and safely pedal to the beach and best of all, they will not have to worry about parking a car.  They will now have the best front row parking on the sand.”

This sentence is particularly galling in that it ignores the great bike path along the San Diego River. It is already possible for our neighbors east of Nimitz to hop on that bike path and ride the entire distance to the beach without encountering any traffic, without crossing Nimitz and Sunset Cliffs.

In conclusion, the problem I have with some of the cycling advocates is honesty.  The removal of parking and this change to West Point Loma were sneaked in without an honest public vetting.  The information given to the decision makers is incorrect or intentionally skewed to favor the cyclists.  Since the news of West Point Loma became known, a Change.org petition opposing the reduction in lanes was created and has 176 signatures as of today.  That number dwarfs the number of cycling advocates that attended the PCPB meeting.  The attitude seems to be that people who drive cars just don’t understand how wonderful this will be so let’s leave them out of the discussion.

If the cycling community wants to avoid the antagonism they get from drivers, then they will need to learn how to work with people who need cars and instead of ignoring them, or worse, avoiding them. They will need to stop making these pie-in-the-skies claims that cycling is the be all and end all.  For many people, it simply isn’t an option.  It may be fine for a person who does not drive or have a nine to five job but that is clearly not everyone.  Let’s be honest and open about it and truly include everyone in the discussions.

 

{ 39 comments… read them below or add one }

Avatar ZZ May 14, 2019 at 2:33 pm

Geoff I agree with you on WPL.

But the removal of the street parking on one side of Sports Arena seems reasonable. That area is awash in parking between the stadium, the strip malls, and there is also ample street parking on most of the side streets. Those particular street spots you’ll typically see a few illegally parked oversize and commercial vehicles and maybe 1 or 2 very beat up old cars that are likely being stored and moved once a week rather than actually used.

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Avatar dajohn May 14, 2019 at 2:48 pm

Hey Geoff,

“This sentence is particularly galling in that it ignores the great bike path along the San Diego River. It is already possible for our neighbors east of Nimitz to hop on that bike path and ride the entire distance to the beach without encountering any traffic, without crossing Nimitz and Sunset Cliffs.”

You are incorrect, there is no easy way to get to the bike path from east of Nimitz all the way to old town. There is one access point on sports arena north of CVS, but you have to have some guts to make that run with cars flying full speed on to the 8, and you still have to ride your bike on the sidewalk, which for adults, is illegal.
Maybe you should check your facts a bit before you get all galled up and write another novella

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Avatar Geoff Page May 14, 2019 at 3:55 pm

dajohn, it is not illegal to ride on the sidewalk. If you go north on the west side of Midway from Sports Arena, you only have to cross one traffic ramp and you’ll be on the bike path away from all traffic. Riders further east can reach Midway via other streets such as Hancock that parallel Sports Arena and are much quieter and are one-way.

As for your last line, “Maybe you should check your facts a bit before you get all galled up and write another novella,” you did not pint out any facts of mine that were no correct and maybe you should look up the word novella. Always nice to have a civil discussion.

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Avatar dajohn June 26, 2019 at 12:42 pm

Hey Geoff,

I “pinted” out that none of this: “This sentence is particularly galling in that it ignores the great bike path along the San Diego River. It is already possible for our neighbors east of Nimitz to hop on that bike path and ride the entire distance to the beach without encountering any traffic, without crossing Nimitz and Sunset Cliffs.” is actually true. The man with all those years in the Construction industry should know that code wise, frontage is not referring to the actual front door of a business, rather weather or not the exterior wall of said building directly abuts public property. Not to mention how useless all this city code nitpicking is for keeping, you know, like kids on bike safe………

Just for an example, I’m thinking of trying to get on my bike over to pick up some stuff at nelson photo leaving from OB.I know for a fact there is not a route there that doesn’t seem super dangerous to get there that doesn’t hit about every major hill in the city or a business frontage.

The complaints about bike lanes from people like you are killing our progress, hurting our chances at combating climate change through alternate transportation.
You see if every person gets their no traffic area kept as wide as a freeway we’ll never be able to carve out a win for people on a bike.

One would think WPL BLVD would be an easy win fore some more bike lane since it’s about as wide as 2 football fields and absolutely dead of traffic down by the slough, but there was no doubt the parking spot counters and width per handbook bureaucracy fanatics would come out with their tome on why it will just practically kill them to have more bike lanes. These people never miss a meeting!

Yawn, it’s all been said before, part of the problem or solution, never good to be on the problem side IMO.

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Avatar Chris May 15, 2019 at 8:03 am

Quote from the San Diego Bike Coalition: “Can I ride on the sidewalk?
•Each city in the county regulates sidewalk riding slightly differently. Here’s a brief rundown:
•Bicycle riding allowed on sidewalks, except in business districts: Oceanside, Encinitas, San Diego, National City, Chula Vista, Imperial Beach, Lemon Grove, Santee, and unincorporated San Diego County.
•Bicycle riding on sidewalks forbidden at all times: Carlsbad, El Cajon, Vista, Poway
•Riding on sidewalks regulated but not forbidden: Escondido, San Marcos
•Riding on sidewalks not allowed if there is an adjacent bike lane or bike path: Solana Beach
•Not regulated: La Mesa
•Riding in parks prohibited: Del Mar”

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Avatar Chris May 15, 2019 at 8:09 am

Quote from the San Diego Bike Coalition: “Can I ride on the sidewalk?
•Each city in the county regulates sidewalk riding slightly differently. Here’s a brief rundown:
•Bicycle riding allowed on sidewalks, except in business districts: Oceanside, Encinitas, San Diego, National City, Chula Vista, Imperial Beach, Lemon Grove, Santee, and unincorporated San Diego County.
•Bicycle riding on sidewalks forbidden at all times: Carlsbad, El Cajon, Vista, Poway
•Riding on sidewalks regulated but not forbidden: Escondido, San Marcos
•Riding on sidewalks not allowed if there is an adjacent bike lane or bike path: Solana Beach
•Not regulated: La Mesa
•Riding in parks prohibited: Del Mar”

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Avatar Geoff Page May 15, 2019 at 9:49 am

Thank you Chris for providing that information. I did some additional checking and here is what the San Diego Municipal Code states:

§84.09 Bicycle Riding Restricted
(a) No person shall operate a bicycle upon any sidewalk fronting any commercial
business establishment unless official signs are posted authorizing such use.

None of the commercial businesses from Nimitz to Midway actually “front” on the sidewalk along West Point Loma. All of the businesses are recessed from the roadway and have separate sidewalks actually in front of their stores such as Baron’s. I’m sure there is no problem riding on the West Point Loma sidewalks but perhaps someone would like to check that with the SDPD.

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Avatar Geoff May 15, 2019 at 5:06 pm

Thanks Geoff. I looked this up because I WAS under the impression there was a blanket restriction of bikes being ridding on all sidewalks in SD. Obviously not the case.

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Avatar ZZ May 14, 2019 at 2:57 pm

I’ve been observing parking on WPL more carefully lately.

In front of the large apartment complexes that line most of the area, parking is normally 100% full after 7pm. The main area there is open parking most of the time is directly in front of Famosa park and the areas along the strip malls.

I don’t think you can lump the ample parking along that park with the rest of the street and say “Look 40% of parking is usually free, we can get rid of a lot of spaces without issue.”

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Avatar retired botanist May 14, 2019 at 3:35 pm

Haha, Geoff, honestly a good piece :-) I’m a little reluctant to comment since I don’t really have a dog in this fight anymore, and feel like I’ve been monopolizing Rag comments lately, but my funny bone prompts me to a couple of points:
The 1st and last time I took my daughter to 31 flavors for ice cream about 20 yrs ago, her poop was blue for several days- no repeat there, and a super lame excuse for cycling down West Pt Loma. I also shopped at Baron’s frequently, but never on my bike.
ANYTHING I had to do that necessitated driving down W. Pt Loma toward Midway, the noted “one of the worst intersections in the country”, involved calculating which day of the week and time of day I was most like to incur the least amount of frustration and wait time, and u-turns, etc, trying to get to whatever habited one corner or another to get to where I was going.
Cyclists are a powerful lobby, whether they are drivers or not, and I agree they need to be tempered, just like the scooter folks, as we are learning daily. Yes, the cycling concept is good, its green, and drivers in general need to better acknowledge cyclists (and pedestrians, thx), but it does not give them license to cycle “above the law”, skim thru stop signs, cut off vehicles in turning lanes, and generally exhibit “holier than thou” behaviors.
Finally, I am an advocate of supporting improvements and changes to the Midway area, and have said before that their planning folks need the support of adjacent communities to help them implement good planning and projects b/c there is so little residential/community presence in that district. But agree that they need to hear from all neighborhoods that feed into that district on these big issues. :-)

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Avatar Geoff Page May 14, 2019 at 4:13 pm

retired botanist, your comments are always well written and thoughtful, don’t worry about monopolizing anything.

I believe we think alike. I am not against cycling improvements, although by being even slightly critical, that is how I am perceived, but I don’t care. My point is that there just needs to be a more involved process so people don’t wake up one day and find these things that affect their daily life that they had no say in. That’s what happened with the sharrows. The cyclists want to ride on Voltaire, maybe they could compromise and ride on Muir. Maybe the sharrows on Catalina Blvd. could be on Venice or Santa Barbara, at least have the discussion. But, it seems the cyclists have the upper hand now because of the Climate Action Plan and politicians falling all over themselves to show they are working toward that plan. I doubt there is a politician anywhere who would vote against these improvements for fear of being labeled as not being with the climate plan. These few cycling projects will not make a dent in that problem but the public perception is that they do.

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Avatar Chris May 14, 2019 at 6:31 pm

One question I have is why does she not drive? I get the impression she chooses not to (rather than she can’t) and expects the rest of the world to follow. That being said, I DO support better bike infrastructure but not sure the best way to do so in a way that will benefit everyone. She kind of makes it sound like that part of Point Loma will somehow become an area like Hillcrest which ironically a lot of business are suffering do to lack of parking. Either she’s very naive or has some other ulterior motive. The whole thing is kind of a double edged sword because I would truly love to see more communities pan out the way she describes, but is it realistic?

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Avatar Fleddie May 14, 2019 at 7:59 pm

As a resident/home owner in the area on West Point Loma, I can say that removing two lanes and/or parking will cause a lot of problems. Traffic is already very busy on WPL and parking is always full along WPL and the side streets (not to mention the folks who park their junkers and/or campers and/or business vehicles (taco trucks). This is another issue (Apartments and Condos building minimum # of parking spots) Folks need cars to get to work. I would take public transit if it didn’t take 2 hours to get from my home to place of employment via bus. I’m all for bikes and people biking to the beach from this section of town, but please take a realistic approach and find a win/win for all involved. Let’s face it..some towns/cities were simply not developed / planned to be ultra bike friendly. The change should not be forced at the expense of traffic (which is getting worse) and parking for residents.

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Avatar Paul Webb May 15, 2019 at 9:37 am

To start, I commend Nicole B. for her commitment to the community and for her advocacy for safe biking and pedestrian travel. We should all be grateful for people like her who give their time and energy to promote safe and healthy transportation alternatives.
That being said, I have to say that the whole issue surrounding the proposed WPL plan was overly hasty, was not properly vetted with the communities involved and apparently not well studied by City staff. I note that, as Geoff points out, the study was done on street sweeping day, which borders on negligence on the part of the City. Doing a parking study on a day when parking is prohibited is just asinine.
I also note, as someone who pays attention to the planing board and its activities, that the agenda item was listed only as an action item regarding bike lanes on WPL – no indication that the “road diet” would eliminate traffic lanes. I think the turn out for the meeting would have been far different if the actual project had been described in the meeting notice. There wasn’t a lot of transparency in how this project was described.

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Avatar Paul Webb May 15, 2019 at 10:18 am

Let me add to my previous comment. The project description contained within the planning board’s agenda is so misleading as to potentially violate the Brown Act, which planning board meetings are subject to. The guidance on the Brown Act states that the purpose of the brief general description in a meeting notice is to inform interested members of the public about the subject matter under consideration so that they can determine whether to monitor or participate in the meeting of the body. To describe the project as adding bike lanes does not clearly give the extent of the proposed project. I might not care if bike lanes are added, but, clearly, the public does appear to care about the reduction of traffic lanes which is not indicated in the meeting notice. We were not given adequate notice that would enable us to decide to participate in the decision of the planning board.

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Avatar retired botanist May 15, 2019 at 3:03 pm

Good point, Paul, and a good example of the increasingly prevalent “gloss over” tactic we see a lot of these days. That is, “oh, its ‘green’ (aka win some more constituent backing) so it must be ok, let’s railroad it through”. Another example we’re all aware of lately: the ‘greenwashing” of the scooter frenzy. Yet more examples, “We’re going to add jobs to your local economy”, “STVRs bring in tourist dollars and sidestep hotel development”, Monsanto’s “we’re fortifying South American sweet potatoes to combat Vitamin A deficiency”. As taxpayers and constituents we MUST pay attention to details, and the HUGE lack thereof….

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Avatar Mr. X May 15, 2019 at 7:36 pm

I’m not sure how the whole Brown Act thing works, but I drafted a letter if anybody wants to run with it, or help me with this process. I’m really fired up about this lack of transparency on this particular issue.

_______________________________________________

Presiding Officer: Robert Goldyn
?Members: David Dick, Brad Herrin, Mark Krencik, Scott Deschenes, Robert Tripp Jackson, Jim Hare, Fred Kosmo, Sarah M Alemany, Korla Eaquinta, Margaret Virissimo, Don Sevrens, Lucky Morrison, Eva Schmitt, Mandy Havlik.

Peninsula Community Planning Board

Dear Mr. Goldyn,
This letter is to call your attention to what I believe was a substantial violation of a central provision of the Ralph M. Brown Act, one which may jeopardize the finality of the action taken by Peninsula Community Planning Board.
The nature of the violation is as follows: In its meeting of April 18, 2019, the Peninsula Community Planning Board took action to make a motion and take a vote on approving the city of San Diego’s proposed cycle track bike lake option, presented by San Diego city employee Esmerelda White, for West Point Loma Blvd. that would take away 2 of the four lanes on W. Point Loma Blvd, between Nimitz Blvd. and Sports Arena Blvd. The action item was approved for recommendation by a vote of 11 in favor and 3 in opposition.
The description of the action item was very vague and misleading. Therefore the action taken was not in compliance with the Brown Act because there was not adequate notice to the public on the posted agenda for the meeting that the matter acted upon would be discussed, and there was no finding of fact made by the Peninsula Community Planning Board that urgent action was necessary on a matter unforeseen at the time the agenda was posted.
In the event it appears to you that the conduct of the Peninsula Community Planning Board specified herein did not amount to the taking of action, I call your attention to Section 54952.6, which defines “action taken” for the purposes of the Act expansively, i.e. as “a collective decision made by a majority of the members of a legislative body, a collective commitment or promise by a majority of the members of a legislative body to make a positive or negative decision, or an actual vote by a majority of the members of a legislative body when sitting as a body or entity, upon a motion, proposal, resolution, order or ordinance.”
As you are aware,  the Brown Act creates specific agenda obligations for notifying the public with a “brief description” of each item to be discussed or acted upon, and also creates a legal remedy for illegally taken actions—namely, the judicial invalidation of them upon proper findings of fact and conclusions of law.
Pursuant to that provision (Government Code Section 54960.1), I demand that the Peninsula Community Planning Board cure and correct the illegally taken action as follows:
1 – Formally and explicitly rescind any recommendation made to the city of San Diego, or any of its regulatory boards or legislative bodies, regarding the Peninsula Community Planning Board’s support for adding any bike lanes on West Point Loma Blvd.
2 – Disclose at the next subsequent meeting why each individual member of the Peninsula Community Planning Board took the positions that they did.
3 – Put the action item in question back on the agenda for the next Peninsula Community Planning Board meeting with a description that is reflective of both sides of this issue, namely adding a cycle track and removing one half of the traffic lanes between W. Point Loma Blvd between Nimitz Blvd. and Sports Arena Blvd., and subsequently provide an opportunity, during this same meeting, for informed comment by members of the public, notice of which is properly posted, with an accurate description of the action item in question.
4 – Provide any and all documents in the possession of the Peninsula Community Planning Board related to the action taken, with copies available to the public on request at the offices of the Peninsula Community Planning Board and also at the meeting at which reconsideration of the matter is to occur.
As provided by Section 54960.1,  you have 30 days from the receipt of this demand to either cure or correct the challenged action or inform me of your decision not to do so. If you fail to cure or correct as demanded, such inaction may leave me no recourse but to seek a judicial invalidation of the challenged action pursuant to Section 54960.1, in which case I would also ask the court to order you to pay my seek court costs and reasonable attorney fees in this matter, pursuant to Section 54960.5.
Respectfully yours,

cc  (Name and title of agency’s legal advisor)

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 1:34 pm

Nicely done, Mr. X. The only comment I would make is that Robert Goldyn’s title is Chair.

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Avatar Mr. X May 16, 2019 at 2:12 pm

Thanks Geoff. Do you know how to proceed from here? I’m a newbie and would appreciate any guidance.

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 2:21 pm

Mr. X, I’d just send it by email to the address on the PCPB website, pcpbsd@gmail.com. Robert Goldyn monitors that email address.

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Avatar dajohn June 28, 2019 at 7:08 am

This is the sadest thing I think the OB rag has ever hosted. Organizing the takedown of bike lane expansion right in the rag comments. S A D

Just remember when you deal with Geoff page, he only wants parking for him, he was pissed some of the bars in OB had a music fest this winter to bring some business in in the slow winter months by the beach, but they didn’t take into account that he likes to come to OB in the winter for easy parking. This is the worst of bad faith selfish engagement, if everyone is selfish like this OB will be under water in 50 years.

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Avatar Geoff Page June 28, 2019 at 8:48 am

dajohn, I think you need to actually read what is written without your filters. The OB Rag has not organized anything. The article did not advocate for taking down the bike lane proposal. What the article is about are two things, informing more people of what happened and pointing out that the discussion was not well enough noticed to make the opponents aware of what was being proposed. What the article provided was a forum for people to express their opinions and that is a good thing.

Your personal attack on me is as ill-informed as your comment about this article. Try sticking to the issue and providing a point of view, attacking the messenger contributes nothing to the discussion other than to illustrate that you have nothing to say.

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Avatar dajohn June 28, 2019 at 9:12 am

Geoff, you know for a fact what I said is not ill informed, it is informed by your specific comments on this open forum. I don’t need to get into to verbatim quotes and dates, you know exactly what I referenced is 100% something you said about the music fest and parking. No filter. And it is not irrelevant to the thousands of words on this page alone you have written on this topic of transportation in our community.

Also. I didn’t say the organizing is done by the rag, they are hosting a comment section on a “grassroots and progressive views on local news”. While what you advocate may be grassroots, it is 100% not progressive. There is no gray area. Cars over bike lanes is Conservative with a big C.

That the techno utopian idea of car sharing instead of biking is getting play in these same comments, it just goes to show how absolutely out of touch with reality some people are around here. Not to mention, complete lack of empathy for the people who can’t afford an uber and won’t ever be able to share some uber ride share. but those people are to busy working to attend a PL planning board meeting and they never get a say about the future.

I’m sure Robert Goldyn loves volunteering his time to read the same type of letters over and over again from the same high handed people, who just always have something to complain about.

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Avatar Geoff Page June 28, 2019 at 9:19 am

dajohn, show s exactly where I “advocated” that you disagree with.

I advocated for a more open discussion of the issue, that I will plead guilty to. Do you have a problem with that?

The PCPB meets at 6:00 in the evening the third Thursday of every month. That is a pretty convenient time for most people.

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Avatar dajohn June 28, 2019 at 9:48 am

Hey Geoff,

All this “talk” is only for the people with enough free time to attend, and write all these letters and sue for civil rights, etc.

It’s not for the poor people who actually ride the bus and bikes. The whiners get outsize representation because they are they only ones with enough free time to care. Unless they are on the payroll of some pro bike org, which seems to be only a few poeple.

You did not only advocate for an open discussion, you opined on a range of topics, from crosswalks to riding on the sidewalk. I’m just using the reply button to keep the conversation going, and point out some areas that do not align with the sites stated purpose, along with some of the inconsistent points you have made.

I for one can’t afford the time away from my family on Thursdays to go to a windbag meeting like that and hear a bunch of whiners roll out a 60o word, 4 point rebuttal that mentions As provided by Section 54960.1, ….. blah, blah, blah, that is not conversation, it is death by bureaucracy.

Biking is dead, long live biking!

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Avatar ZZ May 17, 2019 at 2:37 pm

Thank you Mr. X.

Baron’s is a local chain, and the Grocery Outlet is a locally owned franchise. Are they prepared to lose a large share of their OB customers because travel time from OB would go up by 50-75%?

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Avatar Matt May 16, 2019 at 9:08 am

Geoff – Our need for cars in San Diego was produced by 50 years of building infrastructure for them at the expense of all other modes of transportation. If you’re opposed to this plan, what plan do you propose to decrease San Diego’s carbon footprint?

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 1:28 pm

Matt, my opposition to this is based on the lack of real public discussion. Mine is only one opinion, I think the larger community needs to weigh in as it has been doing ever since this was publicized. What would I do? I would use the alternate route I described above and avoid West Point Loma. But, I think it is more important to hear from everyone else.

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 1:39 pm

Matt, I just realized I didn’t answer the question about the carbon footprint. That is a complicated issue and creating bike lanes for people to use will not make an appreciable difference. We need to start logically with a decent mass transit system. I traveled all over Mexico and Central America easily on buses, not so here. If there was a frequent bus route up and down West Point Loma, for example, people would use it. More telecommuting. Stronger rules about efficient vehicles. There are many things.

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Avatar Serge Issakov May 16, 2019 at 1:51 pm

Geoff,

I agree with you about bikeways not making an appreciable difference in bike usage. I mean an impressive-sounding of doubling the usage would mean increasing from 0.5% to 1%. That just isn’t going to do much.

My hope is that self-driving pooled shared vehicles will make a significant improvement in terms of the carbon footprint. Competing against inexpensive (because pooled) door to door delivery, public transit will be moot.

Serge

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 2:08 pm

Serge, that is one of many good ideas to solve the carbon footprint problem, I’m in agreement there.

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Avatar ZZ May 17, 2019 at 3:16 pm

When I worked downtown, I calculated that driving was considerably cheaper than taking the bus.

Bus was $4.50 roundtrip. Driving was 14 miles roundtrip, which means about half a gallon of gas, currently that costs about $2. For every 10,000 miles, the value of my car goes down by about $1,000 and requires $80 in oil changes.

In total, the direct cost of commuting is about $3.50, the bus $4.50.

Mass transit will rarely be more convenient that driving for a car owner, but it should at least be cheaper.

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Avatar Vern June 28, 2019 at 7:44 am

My daughter has been taking the bus to and from downtown everyday for the last three (plus) years. Costs her $72/mo – roughly $2/day. Far more cost effective than owning, insuring, maintaining, operating and parking a vehicle downtown everyday.

“… In DTSD, parking can cost between $3-$10/hour, while 24 hour parking can cost from $10 to $30…”.

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Avatar Serge Issakov May 16, 2019 at 11:09 am

This statement describing sharrows is a bit misleading:

” the painted depictions of a bicycle with an arrow that indicate cyclists have as much right to the lane as cars do. ”

If you change “indicate” to “remind everyone” it would be accurate. That is, the sharrow does not actually make any legal difference; it’s just a reminder of what the law is regarding cyclists rights to use the full lane there, because attempting to share a lane that is too narrow to be safely shared, like that one is there, invites dangerously close passes.

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 1:32 pm

Serge, you are correct, that would have been more accurate.

hope the sharrows also remind cyclists as well, reminding them that they have to follow the same rules of the road as automobiles do. That means, among many things, not jumping into a crosswalk and expecting to be take advantage of a protection meant for pedestrians and stopping at stop signs.

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Avatar Serge Issakov May 16, 2019 at 1:47 pm

There is no state law banning cycling on sidewalks or in crosswalks. Within the City of SD, sidewalk cycling is banned, but only in business districts. The legalities of how a cyclist transitions from “road user” to “sidewalk user” is a bit nebulous, but I think as long as they yield to others during the transition, they’re good.

Now, running stop signs is clearly a violation. But while cyclists probably roll stops more than motorists do, motorists certainly do their share, and of course they create a much bigger risk to others when they do so. And in general most motorists are almost constantly breaking the law. If there is no congestion they’re likely to be speeding, and if there is congestion they are likely to be tailgating. So without defending it, I call tilting at windmills whenever people complain about the annoying but relatively harmless behavior of cyclists rolling stop signs. Not to mention that we have WAY too many stop signs. Paris has zero. Zero!!! So can San Diego. It’s ridiculous.

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Avatar Geoff Page May 16, 2019 at 2:06 pm

Serge, Chris did a good job above of listing the various restrictions on sidewalk cycling around the state. I posted the San Diego Municipal Code about riding in commercial districts to add to Chris’s post.

I’m not talking about rolling stops, I’m talking about full speed runs that are frequent. A cyclist did this to me over by Sunset Cliffs. I slammed on my brakes and stopped about 12″ from him. He just rode on without a beat. I was driving a full size E150 Ford Econoline van. He was very lucky I still have good reflexes at my advanced age. I don’t consider this behavior to be “relatively harmless.”

We’re not talking about motorists, we’re talking about cyclists, that is another subject and there would be plenty to say. That is just deflecting from this subject.

As for Paris, please forgive me, but I find it irrelevant when people keep comparing what happens in cities that were founded in the third century B.C. and built for horse drawn carriages to a city that is merely a few hundred years old and that was built for automobiles.

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Avatar kh May 17, 2019 at 1:15 pm

The city count is inaccurate. Based on street view, there are about 197 spots now.

The city says 36 parking spaces will go away. But they failed to count some existing spots, and they erroneously placed some new spots right across the front of a fire hydrant.

Correcting for these mistakes, I count 65 spots going away, nearly all which front homes and businesses. The ones by the slough remain. And that doesn’t include 10 more spots could be added right now within the existing lane configuration.

Whether or not you are a bike advocate, this is a major difference and it was not reflected in the presentation or the public notice.

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Avatar IHB2 July 19, 2019 at 8:23 am

Taking WPL from 4 lanes + suicide lane to 2 lanes will make for epic traffic backups as folks exit the Point Loma area for big events like July 4 fireworks, Lighted Boat Parade, OB street festivals, etc. Now, with the 5 lanes, traffic headed east is backed up for hours after these events, primarily b/c of the lane reduction – 1 dedicated left turn, 1 dedicated right turn, leaving only 1 east bound lane at Sports Arena. Moving the lane reduction from Midway back to the Famosa Slough will increase the backup & therefore travel time per car, which seems like the opposite air quality effect from what cycling advocates are trying to accomplish.

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