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Harbor Drive Getting Facelift For First Time In 20 Years, Becoming More Bike-Friendly

A construction worker repaving North Harbor Drive in downtown San Diego on Ma...

Photo by Roland Lizarondo

Above: A construction worker repaving North Harbor Drive in downtown San Diego on May 12, 2020.

San Diego City planners are moving forward with some improvement projects that might not have been possible if not for the pandemic, including a $4.7 million repaving project on Harbor Drive near downtown.

For millions of visitors each year, Harbor Drive is the first road they will take into San Diego after arriving at the airport, and first impressions are important.

"I think it’s a great idea," said Rudi Weider, who lives downtown and was out riding his bike near the construction. "It’s the main road to the airport and Point Loma, they should be in great shape."

More than 3 miles of North Harbor Drive between West Ash Street and Nimitz Boulevard will be repaved and get "buffered" bike lanes. Those are bike lanes that add a few feet in between traffic and riders.

Reported by Matt Hoffman , Video by Roland Lizarondo

Many people choose to ride along the bayfront sidewalk instead of along the busy Harbor Drive. Riders think the buffered bike lanes are a good idea.

"You do hit a lot of runners, pedestrians, people walking, some people in strollers [along the bay front], so it does interfere with pedestrian safety and our safety as well," said Edgar Moreno, who lives in Golden Hill.

Taxi drivers are along Harbor Drive all the time, taking passengers to and from the airport. Drivers said the improvements are overdue.

"I think it’s a good idea and the reason I think that is a lot of the roads here they’re really bad. They were crumbling, there was a lot of holes on them," said taxi driver Aaron Gihle, who lives in Linda Vista.

Gihle said normally he is busy all day taking passengers from the airport. Recently, it has been extremely slow.

"It’s really been bad," Gihle said. "Everything is shut down. If you get one fare or two the whole day, you’re doing good."

The paving project is expected to last through the middle of June. Drivers in the area can expect delays from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Listen to this story by Matt Hoffman.

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Photo of Matt Hoffman

Matt Hoffman
General Assignment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI am a general assignment reporter for KPBS. In addition to covering the latest news and issues that are relevant to the San Diego community, I like to dig deeper to find the voices and perspectives that other media often miss.

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