Wednesday, July 18 , 2018, 5:29 pm | Mostly Cloudy 71º


Letter to the Editor: Cars Are Basic’s Predictions for 2015

Despite hundreds of thousands of lost ridership on rail and buses in both Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, there will be a redoubled effort to force ridership onto the community, costing the taxpayers millions. Lost ridership due to the newly issued driver licenses will compound bus and rail declines.

The intentionally obstructive anti-Highway 101 widening lawsuit will be settled and the City of Santa Barbara will have more egg on its face, with the City Council majority headed by Mayor Helene Schneider ducking for excuses.

Caltrans will continue with the dangerous and stupid roundabouts like the one at the intersection of Highways 154 and 246 because of political pressure by Cal Poly, UC Santa Barbara and others in District 5. Caltrans appears to have been co-opted by political correctness instead of street and highway safety.

The County of Santa Barbara will not meet its road and street repair needs even though Supervisors Salud Carbajal, Doreen Farr, Steve Lavagnino and Janet Wolf all stated after the close Measure M election that more money would go to these badly needed items.

The City of Santa Barbara Bicycle Master Plan Update will waste the $200,000 and result in a public opinion fluff survey, instead of hard reality numbers. Schneider, Councilmen Gregg Hartt and Bend White and others have made it clear their interests are not related to reality and the failure of the past 40 years to replace the auto for bikes.

The City of Goleta will continue to plan for the closing down of Old Town Goleta by intentionally removing 50 percent of the Hollister Avenue street capacity. Goleta will stubbornly use the failed “mitigation” ploy to justify bad planning and interfering with freedom of travel in the Goleta Valley.

Goleta will press for more housing and commercial development, excusing the resultant traffic congestion with “mitigation” of the failed bus and bike plans.

There will be more pressure to “upscale” the Milpas Street business district, narrow the Milpas corridor and create more congestion in the neighborhood, sealing the fate of the last vestiges of Santa Barbara’s blue-collar businesses and housing.

Santa Barbara will continue to push for the closing of east Cabrillo Boulevard, narrow the rest of Lower State Street (relying on a bad 11-year-old traffic study), and then wring its collective political hands in the future when people avoid the beachfront businesses because of congestion. (Goleta should thank Santa Barbara for the added business.)

Anti-car political factions will continue to push for bulbout hell, speed bumps and closing of streets to cars for bikes, all the while ignoring sound emergency planning and daily needs of the middle class. This after the paid director of the Bicycle Coalition definitively stated with just students the failure of bike paths to have kids ride to school.

The Santa Barbara County Association of Governments (SBCAG) will continue to funnel money instead of making recommendations on hard facts. SBCAG board and staff were badly beat up on for not acting as a gatekeeper in 2014, but political correctness will continue to dump good money after bad projects.

A North County bus system demanded by the anti-car groups will fail to meet the minimum fare-box return, costing taxpayers more money on failed routes.

The South Coast will continue to push for rail and buses that are economically shaky and, in light of air-quality successes, make even less sense than a decade ago.

SBCAG will continue to dodge the serious ethical issues of having an elected city councilman (Gregg Hart) working for it. Hart has it both ways, a grantee member working for a primary grantor and getting paid and benefits from both government agencies.

HAPPY NEW YEAR! (we think)


Cars Are Basic

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