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Zombie Road: Controversial San Onofre Toll Stretch Revised

TCA Board Votes To Study Adding Small Segment

The Transportation Corridor Agency (TCA) Board voted to move forward with a plan to build a segment of its proposed 16-mile toll road in South Orange County.

This map shows the route of the proposed 16 mile toll road that would cut through San Onofre State Beach Park.
Enlarge this image

Above: This map shows the route of the proposed 16 mile toll road that would cut through San Onofre State Beach Park.

The agency will pay for an environmental and financial analysis of the plan to add a 4-mile stretch of the toll road.

The 16-mile toll road was rejected by the California Coastal Commission and the U.S. Commerce Department three years ago. One part of the road would have cut through San Onofre State Beach Park.

Damon Nagami is an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council and a member of the Save San Onofre Coalition.

"For TCA to come back and try to build this road in pieces, it's illegal, it's a bad idea and it's a waste of time and money," said Nagami. "This agency needs to focus on real transportation solutions and not try to bring back a project that's dead in the water."

Elizabeth Goldstein is president of the California State Parks Foundation.

"This is a road to nowhere," said Goldstein, speaking on behalf of the Save San Onofre Coalition. "Building this 4-mile segment is an irresponsible and fiscally unsound attempt by the TCA to pressure federal and state officials to ultimately approve a route that would destroy San Onofre State Beach and that has already been forcefully rejected. Even the Bush administration, under pressure from all the lobbyists money can buy, refused to endorse the toll road through San Onofre.

But Lisa Telles with the TCA said that since the California Coastal Commission decision, the agency has held more than 250 meetings with groups for and against the toll road.

"Most say there's still a problem that needs to be solved," Telles said last week. "There's only one route to get through South Orange County, which is a big bottleneck between Los Angeles and San Diego."

Telles also said the entire toll-road system in Orange County (51 miles in total) has all been built in sections.

Comments

Avatar for user 'squonk'

squonk | October 14, 2011 at 12:27 p.m. ― 2 years, 10 months ago

"Zombie Road"... nice headline... gee, I don't know why people might get the perception that PBS is in the pocket of the extreme left.

Funny, no mention of the 17,500 jobs that would be created by the construction of this road. You can't swing a dead cat without hitting a politician who says we need to improve our nation's infrastructure and that will create jobs.

This project won't even cost taxpayer dollars!

I think it's brilliant to build the four-mile stretch now. That way, they'll be ready to go and finally connect to the I-5 freeway once the San Onofre State Park lease ends in 2021.

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | October 17, 2011 at 5:37 p.m. ― 2 years, 10 months ago

Squonk, jobs are important, but so is the environment. I guess California's coast doesn't have enough pavement for you? Why don't we just make our entire coastline a 60-lane mega highway.

You build more lanes and more roads, and then in a few years you need more. So you build more, and then in a few years you need more. At some point this idiocy needs to be stopped.

Is it even legal for these people to be talking about building even part of this expansion when it was rejected by the Coastal Commission?

Hopefully there will be legal challenges and this road will be stopped.

Oh and squonk, just curious since you seem to be concerned about jobs, do you support Obama's jobs package?

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Avatar for user 'Peking_Duck_SD'

Peking_Duck_SD | October 17, 2011 at 5:41 p.m. ― 2 years, 10 months ago

Squonk wrote, "gee, I don't know why people might get the perception that PBS is in the pocket of the extreme left."

PBS is probably the last objective major news source there is.

You turn on most news programs today, be they on the radio or TV, and all you hear is a bunch of yelling and name calling.

But when I listen to NPR and PBS, I hear rational, in-depth discussion where everyone is allowed to talk.

If you don't like it, go read the San Diego Union Tribune which is paid for (literally) by the local GOP.

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