September. 29, 2022
This week the City Council voted to advance several projects to help enhance traffic safety, which I’ll review below, in addition to these topics:
- 3rd public meeting scheduled for environmental study of housing sites
- Carlsbad Boulevard sign gets a spruce up
- Tips for organics recycling
- Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month
- Keeping mosquitoes away
- Free Ride Day is Oct. 5
- Upcoming meetings
Safer Streets Together
You may recall when we proclaimed a local emergency on traffic safety Aug. 23, our strategy was to focus on things that could be done immediately while working on a comprehensive set of options for the City Council’s consideration. Tuesday, we returned to the City Council with those options.
We continue to follow the three Es of traffic safety – education, engineering and enforcement – knowing that all three are important and work together to promote safe behaviors on the roadway. Our options were also geared toward all modes of travel. See the full plan.
The City Council voted to move forward with over a dozen actions, all of which could either be paid for through the $2 million emergency funding the City Council approved Aug. 30 or had no additional cost to the city. These include:
- Expand public education to include partnerships with schools, businesses and mobility organizations.
- Work with local school districts to explore developing a permit program requiring students to take a bike safety class to park their bicycles on campus.
- Upgrade traffic signals at intersections with high pedestrian traffic.
- Work with the city’s lobbyists to build upon recent state legislation addressing e-bike safety.
- Accelerate plans to repave and restripe city streets to create more space for walkers and bicyclists while slowing down vehicle traffic.
- Conduct a citywide review of speed limits.
City Council also asked staff to return with a resolution for its consideration supporting Vision Zero, a national program promoting a comprehensive approach to eliminating serious traffic related injuries and deaths.
The City of Carlsbad is already following many of the policies recommended in the Vision Zero strategy. If the City Council were to approve a resolution supporting Vision Zero, it could also direct city staff to develop a plan specific to the Vision Zero framework.
Finally, the City Council also asked staff to present the additional options to the Traffic & Mobility Commission and the Planning Commission so those two advisory bodies could weigh in. I will let you know when those have been scheduled. Both of these meetings will be open to the public and provide an opportunity for community members to share feedback. Learn more.
E-bike education workshop
A number of local organizations are coming together to host a free bike and e-bike safety and education workshop.
Tuesday, Oct. 4 -6 – 7 p.m. Pine Avenue Community Center
Restriping major streets
One of the ongoing projects that has been sped up due to the emergency is the restriping of “arterial” roads. You can think of arterial roads like arteries in your body – they are larger and carry more volume.
- We repave miles of streets every year, which provides an opportunity to change the lane striping.
- In most cases that means making driving lanes more narrow, which has the psychological effect of making drivers be more careful and drive more slowly.
- The extra room is then added to create wider bike lanes or a buffered strip between the bike lane and the vehicle lane.
One of these projects involves restriping southbound Carlsbad Boulevard, from Manzano Drive to Island Way, to create more space for biking and parking and leave one lane for traffic. It’s an interim step in a long-term plan to move the roadway east to protect infrastructure against cliff erosion.
Other biking and walking enhancements City Council approved Tuesday include:
- Green bike lane enhancements at five intersections on S. Carlsbad Boulevard.
- Adding dashed green stripes to the bike lane on La Costa Avenue at three intersections.
- Creating a bike lane on northbound Jefferson Street from Las Flores Drive to the I-5 overpass and extending the southbound bike lane on Jefferson.
- Narrowing eastbound travel lanes on Cannon Road to add a bike lane and buffer between the I-5 northbound ramps and Paseo Del Norte.
Green bike lane treatments are also planned for many other street segments in the coming weeks.Learn more.
New pedestrian signal at Tamarack and Valley
In more traffic safety news, a new type of traffic signal has been installed at the corner of Tamarack Avenue and Valley Street. Along with other changes to the intersection, the new signal will make it easier to notice when someone is crossing the street.
- This type of “pedestrian signal” has already been installed elsewhere in the county, but this is the first one in Carlsbad.
- It’s designed to stop road traffic by activating a series of lights that direct drivers to slow down and stop after a pedestrian presses the button.
- This intersection is heavily used by school traffic in the mornings and afternoons, so it will help direct traffic during those peak times, without forcing cars to stop at other times of the day.
The city also extended the curbs on the west side of the intersection to encourage drivers to slow down more when turning and shorten the distance people need to walk across Tamarack. Learn more.
Third meeting scheduled for housing input
The city recently added a third public meeting to get your input on what environmental impacts should be evaluated in a study on potential properties that could be rezoned to accommodate future housing. We’ve also extended the deadline to provide comments from Oct. 14 to Oct. 26.
- The city is required to create an updated plan every eight years or so to promote the creation of affordable housing, based on the number of units allocated to Carlsbad through a process called the regional housing needs assessment.
- Carlsbad’s plan was approved by the state in 2021.
- One part of the plan involves rezoning certain properties to allow more housing units to be built.
- The next step is to perform environmental studies on the potential sites.
- The first set of meetings is to identify what potential environmental impacts should be reviewed.
- The next step will be to release a draft of the environmental report for public review and comment.
Environmental Scoping Meeting
Oct. 17, 6 – 7:30 p.m. -City of Carlsbad- Faraday Administration Center, 1635 Faraday Ave.
You can also send comments via mail or email through Oct. 26 to:
Carlsbad Boulevard sign getting a spruce up
I am sure it seems like just yesterday when the now iconic Carlsbad sign went up in the Village, but it’s actually already been in place for eight years. City crews will be out next week giving the sign a fresh coat of paint and generally making sure it stays well maintained. If you’re driving, biking or walking in the area, please give yourself extra time to get where you need to go. Or, better yet, consider taking an alternate route.
- Crews will start work on Monday, Oct. 3 at 5:30 a.m., and will try to wrap up before traffic picks up in the afternoon each day.
- To make sure crews are safe, some lane closures may be in place and a few parking spaces may be temporarily restricted. All travel lanes and parking will be restored when crews finish work each day.
- The project should be complete on Thursday, Oct. 6.
Thank you for your patience during construction. Crews will do their best to complete work as quickly as possible to minimize any impacts.
Organic waste composting resources
As you likely know by now, on July 1, a new state law went into effect that requires Carlsbad residents and businesses to dispose of food scraps, food-soiled paper and yard waste in their green compost carts. Here are some helpful resources to make the process easier.
If you haven’t picked up a free kitchen caddy from Republic Services yet, you still have time. These small containers can be used to store food scraps in the kitchen, so you don’t need to take them out to your green compost bin several times a day.
Monday – Saturday (ongoing) -8 a.m. – 4 p.m. -Palomar Transfer Station, 5960 El Camino Real
What goes where video -The city has created some new videos to help residents learn how to best comply with this new requirement. The first one is below and focuses on what goes in your green cart.
Free kitchen caddies for Carlsbad residents
We have many tips and more information on the city website.
Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month at the Library
Sept. 15 to Oct. 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month and the City of Carlsbad is proud to celebrate the history, culture and contributions of Hispanic Americans. If you’d like to learn more about this annual recognition, the city’s libraries have some great programs and resources, including:
- Book recommendations that highlight the stories of Hispanic Americans ranging from historical fiction to biographies to award-winning novels.
- Beautiful catrina dolls on display at all three library locations, on loan from one of our city employees, Christina Lorenzo, who works at the Library Learning Center.
- A collection of narrative and documentary films celebrating the Hispanic community that are free to stream on Kanopy and Hoopla with your Carlsbad City Library card.
Keeping mosquitoes away
If you’ve been getting more mosquito bites than usual these past few weeks you’re not alone. The County of San Diego recently shared some information about invasive Aedes mosquitoes that are active in our region. These small, black and white striped mosquitoes like to lay their eggs in small amounts of water. Here’s how you can fight back:
- Make sure to dump out any water sources to help prevent mosquito breeding near you.
- Put screens on windows and doors. Aedes mosquitoes can live and breed indoors.
- Wear long sleeves and pants. They are aggressive biters indoors and outdoors, especially during the day.
- Apply insect repellent containing an EPA approved active ingredient such as: DEET, picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus, Para-menthane-diol, 2-undecanone, or IR3535. Use insect repellent as directed on the label.
The county conducts larvicide drops in lagoons and other waterways several times each year during mosquito breeding season. If you are being bitten by mosquitoes during daylight hours, find mosquitoes that look like invasive Aedes mosquitoes or notice increased mosquito activity you can report it to the county by calling 858-694-2888 or emailing email@example.com. Learn more on the county’s website.
Ride transit for free Oct. 5
North County Transit District and San Diego Metropolitan Transit System are bringing back Free Ride Day on Oct. 5. That means you can hop on the Coaster or bus, or the Sprinter and Trolley if you’re traveling to other parts of the region for free.
Sustainability is always a focus for Carlsbad, and Free Ride Day is a great opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save some money at the same time. And it’s not the only event this month focused on these goals:
- Rideshare Week is also taking place Oct. 3-7 to encourage people to try ridesharing.
The next City Council meeting will be held Oct. 11 at 5 p.m. in the City Council chamber. A link to the full agenda and staff reports will be available on the city’s website by the Friday before the meeting.
- Oct. 3, 4 p.m. – Traffic & Mobility Commission
- Oct. 4, 4 p.m. – Beach Preservation Commission
- Oct. 5, 5 p.m. – Planning Commission
- Oct. 6, 3 p.m. – Senior Commission
- Oct. 6, 6 p.m. – Arts Commission
In closing, I want to acknowledge the many people affected by Hurricane Ian this week. The photos and videos coming across are just heartbreaking. We may not face the threat of hurricanes, but any disaster can serve as a reminder to make sure you and your loved ones are prepared for emergencies. This emergency preparedness guide is a great place to start. Please take a look.
I hope everyone has a nice weekend.
Scott Chadwick, Carlsbad City Manager
CarlsbadConnects app is an easy way to report things that need repair or attention around town, like potholes, sidewalk cracks, traffic light outages, graffiti and code enforcement issues. Submit service requests anonymously or create a free account where you can track progress and see what other people have reported. Read more
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