Saturday, May 5, 2018

Encinitas Residents Coalition Files Environmental Lawsuit Against Streetscape

On April 30, 2018, the Encinitas Residents Coalition filed a CEQA lawsuit against the city of Encinitas in Superior Court. The suit challenges the city’s action in approving the North Coast Highway 101 Streetscape project, which, the coalition says, fails to adequately consider significant adverse impacts on residents and the environment.

The plan to improve the Leucadia 101 corridor has ballooned into a $30 million project that would reduce the travel lanes to one in each direction, add six roundabouts, require the 24/7 placement of an emergency vehicle, and transform the scenic corridor into a drivers’ nightmare.

“The traffic along this section of the Coast Highway is already congested on a regular basis. For the City Council to think the reduction in travel lanes will alleviate it is magical thinking,” said coalition member Bob Hemphill.

In certifying the Environmental Impact Report for the project at its March 21, 2018 council meeting, the city approved the project despite its unavoidable adverse impacts on traffic circulation and emergency services.

“The city’s cavalier attitude toward the health and safety of its residents is shocking,” said coalition member Doug Fiske after Councilman Tony Kranz voiced support for the project and said he didn’t share the concern about emergency services.

“The Encinitas Residents Coalition wants the city to stop penalizing residents in favor of commercial and other special interests,” said coalition President Leah Bissonette.