Driving on Interstate 5 from San Diego to L.A. is completely maddening. Sometimes it's only a minor ordeal. Sometimes it's a gigantic ordeal. But especially on the south Orange County stretch of the 5, traffic is ridiculous. So any effort to lessen traffic in that area would be wonderful news for the millions of us in Socal who like to go back and forth between L.A./O.C. and San Diego.
But guess who doesn't care: Rep. Susan Davis, D-San Diego. She may pretend she's just interested in proper procedure, but her congressional maneuvering dealing with the planned extension of the 241 toll road in Orange County to the 5 near Camp Pendleton is clearly meant to kill the project.
So the next time you're sitting stuck on the 5, save a few of your expletives for Susan Davis. She's earned them.
Oh no, Chris Reed! I'm savin' all my love for you. Follow me down below as I have to explain to Chris Reed why he's missing the point on extending the 241 to Trestles...
(Cross-posted at Calitics)
So where do I start? Oh yes, how about that traffic? We all know that it's horrendous. However, extending the 241 to Trestles would do absolutely nothing to ease traffic in South Orange County! Did you hear me, Chris Reed? Extending the 241 to Trestles would NOT ease congestion on the 5.
But you know what would ease congestion? Try these suggestions I made back in February:
[...] We can connect the 241 to the 5 AND the 73 at Laguna Niguel, and avoid the San Onofre wilderness while actually connecting South County commuters to where they want to go in OC! Additionally, we can do away with the non-compete agreement with the TCA that only serve to enrich the toll road operators while doing nothing for the people of Orange County. And perhaps if we start putting into practice better urban planning in South County, we won't have to worry about losing the beautiful wild spaces that make South County living so fantastic.
Now don't these ideas make more sense? Instead of building a stupid toll road to nowhere, what if we actually extend the 241 to where people actually want to go in Orange County? Instead of allowing TCA to continue fleecing local taxpayers with these ridiculous non-compete agreements, what if we actually put these roads to work for us? Instead of allowing for any more of this endless sprawl encroaching upon our last remaining open spaces, why don't we start putting some common sense into our plans for growing Orange County?
But anyways, back to Chris Reed missing the point.
Chris Reed complains about Susan Davis' amendment requiring TCA to obey state environmental laws in extending the 241. What's so bad about that? So she's trying to "kill the project" by simply requiring TCA to honor the law? If TCA can actually extend the 241 in an environmentally sensitive way as they claim on their web site, then why should they be afraid of the law?
Oh wait, maybe this is why they are afraid. This plan to extend the 241 to Trestles violates the Coastal Act. It would send toxic storm water down San Mateo Creek to Trestles, polluting the ocean water here. Oh, and speaking of San Mateo Creek, I don't think the Coastal Commission would be happy to hear about how the 241 would alter the sediment flow of the creek, destroying the world-famous waves that have made Trestles such a great surf spot. And oh yes, how about those seven endangered species that would lose their native habitat forever if TCA were allowed to build the toll road to Trestles? Is there any chance that the Coastal Commission would agree to this nonsense?
So can Chris Reed understand why this toll road to Trestles is such a bad idea, now that I've laid the facts clearly at his feet? This stupid toll road to nowhere would do NOTHING to ease South County traffic. This road would destroy one of the last stretches of pristine coast left in Southern California. And yes, this road would illegally cut its way through a public park, and make the park completely unusable! I made sure to make these points clearly, so that Chris Reed wouldn't miss them? I hope he doesn't miss the point now.