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Working to Improve Road Safety, One Pancake at a Time

Foothill PTA seeks $9,000 for crosswalk-light system at Cathedral Oaks Road and Ribera

Photo of Jake Boysel hangs on Foothill School’s perimeter fencing as a reminder to motorists to drive safely.
Photo of Jake Boysel hangs on Foothill School’s perimeter fencing as a reminder to motorists to drive safely. (Foothill PTA)

Foothill Elementary School PTA will hold a Pancake Breakfast, 8-11 a.m. Saturday, April 8, hosted by Community Covenant Church, 5070 Cathedral Oaks Road.

The goal is to raise $9,000 to fund a new crosswalk-light system to make the dangerous intersection at Cathedral Oaks Road and Ribera safer for pedestrians and bicyclists.

The event is open to the public and costs $10 per person. Tickets are available the day of the event or by calling the Foothill School office, 681-1268.

The complete breakfast, prepared by Santa Barbara County Firefighters Local 2046, will include homemade pancakes, eggs, sausage, juice and coffee.

“Our intent is to raise the necessary funds for these greatly needed safety enhancements,” said Bryant Henson, Foothill’s PTA president. “As our children grow and begin to spread their wings, road safety becomes of paramount importance.

"It is clear, as population density increases, instances such as these along the entire Cathedral Oaks corridor will increase,” Henson said.

“Cathedral Oaks is no longer the seldom-traveled road through orchards, it is a major commuter thoroughfare. We cannot wait for future funding, which may or may not materialize,” he said.

The Foothill PTA thanks the following for their support:

County Supervisor Janet Wolf (2nd Dist.), Santa Barbara County Public Works Department, Santa Barbara County Sheriffs Office, Santa Barbara County Firefighters, CHP, COAST, Santa Barbara Charter School and Community Covenant Church.

Also, Goleta United School District, Goleta Family School, and Foothill Elementary School.

Cathedral Oaks Road has a long and unfortunate history of vehicle accidents, many involving pedestrians and bicyclists. Following is a history of accidents on the Cathedral Oaks corridor.

In 2006, Jake Boysel, a Foothill Elementary School alumni and La Colina Junior High School student, was struck and killed near Highway 154 as he was on his way to school.

In 2012, Shuguang Lui, a grandmother, was struck and killed while crossing Cathedral Oaks at Santa Marguerita. Following this incident, safety enhancements were installed to improve that crosswalk.

In December 2016, Peter Meagher, 12, a Foothill alumni and La Colina student, was struck within the crosswalk at Cathedral Oaks and Ribera. This occurred near Jake Boysel’s photo, which hangs on Foothill’s perimeter fencing as a public reminder to drive safely.

Foothill School crossing guards encounter close calls daily. One Foothill parent recounted 26 vehicles entering the crosswalk as she and her child crossed.

County firefighter Dustin McKibben, a Foothill parent of two, he has logged countless hours lobbying for the improvements that exist today, including crucial crosswalk safety enhancements of the bulb-outs and refuge island. But, more safety measures are sought.

For the safety of its faculty, students and the community, Foothill PTA, in collaboration with various county agencies, is looking to install further improvements to the existing crosswalk on Cathedral Oaks at Ribera.

A button-activated blinking light system will help increase the visibility of pedestrians to drivers, thereby making the intersection more safe and secure.

The Public Works Department will provide installation and maintenance of the new light system, leaving the amount to be raised for the actual system at about $9,000 total.

The community is invited to attend the pancake breakfast or to make a donation in support of the new lighting system.

— Joni Kelly for Foothill PTA.

 
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