Read Ed Spriggs's response to "With all the new development going on in the city, what steps can be taken so we don't end up with big traffic Jams"?
Oct 03, 2014 03:07PM
By Paul Spear
TRAFFIC QUESTION FOR DIG IB
Thank you for the opportunity to comment on this question. It is an important one for all IB residents and one of the concerns many people have about the possibility of “overdevelopment” in and around Imperial Beach. I share that concern, which is why I stand for thoughtful, well planned strategies for our future development.
Such careful planning will take us between the twin ills of either too much growth on one hand and stagnation on the other. It will allow us to maintain our character as an informal beach community while developing just enough to ensure we have the services (shopping, dining, etc.) the community needs, and revenue growth (sales tax, etc.) to keep our City financially viable and able to provide necessary public services (public safety, public works, parks, etc.) now and in the future.
Unfortunately, we do not yet have an updated, community-approved long term development plan that includes our new zoning regulations as well as our recent projects (e.g., Pier South), planned projects (e.g., Breakwater, Bernardo Shores, Bikeway Village) or envisioned projects (e.g., hotel at IB Blvd. and Seacoast). I have pushed for several years for such an updated planning effort that will involve major public participation. We should be ready to start such a process soon, now that our new City Manager, Andy Hall, is more familiar with the lay of the land than when he first arrived about a year ago.
Meanwhile, the major new developments will mainly impact the Palm Avenue corridor. These are the Breakwater Project, Bernardo Shores (if it goes forward as a townhome development, that is) and the new Navy Campus with 3000 more daily commuters, according to the Environmental Impact Statement workshop I attended last month.
Fortunately, based on my input and that of other Councilmembers at a recent City Council meeting, the Palm Avenue Master Planning project, funded at about $400,000 through a SANDAG grant, will take these new developments into account. I believe the final Palm Avenue plan will end up with both better access to businesses along the corridor and a better pedestrian environment, while providing for more efficient movement of traffic by synchronizing the lights and maybe providing for pedestrian bridges for better safety and fewer long traffic stops. Let’s all be sure to participate in future workshops to make sure everyone’s concerns are addressed.
Sincerely, Ed Spriggs