Wow! What an encouraging meeting tonight in Costa Mesa as OCTA showed off their latest revisions for 11 regional corridors that will span Orange County from east to west and north to south.
Orange County Supervisor John Moorlach kicked off the event, setting the stage for what would be a night of many impressive presentations. Next up was the Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, Shawn Nelson. He got right to the point:
Don’t make these meetings a forum for re-litigating old problems. This is us trying to get it right going forward.
Then he goes on to describe how besides just the Supervisors and OCTA, but the AQMD, where he also sits on the board, and many other regional agencies were aligned in their commitment to improve bikeways planning and assist the cities in Districts 1 & 2 to connect the paths and bike lanes that will greatly increase safety and encourage more people to get out and ride. Nelson hit it out of the park!
Of course, this effort is still in the early stages; there’s much more to do. Tonight Alta Planning‘s Paul Martin, who is also the lead consultant for the Newport Beach Bicycle Master Plan, showed the scores that determined the rankings for the 11 routes. Coastal cyclists will be pleased to hear that PCH ranked #2; although it was a little disconcerting to see only $1.7 million earmarked so far, while other routes justified as much as $30 million. PCH is the longest of the routes at 21 miles.
The meeting adjourned to the easels where each route was displayed in finer detail. Attendees were encouraged to pick up a pen and write on the maps to indicate any missed opportunities.
The Q&A part was almost an afterthought and only half a dozen people raised their hands to speak; perhaps, like me, they were a little blown away by the overwhelming commitment the Supervisors and OCTA leaders displayed.