January. 26, 2023
Before I jump into this week’s update, I want to remind everyone that the deadline to apply for the District 2 vacancy on the City Council is coming up a week from today, Feb. 2. If you live in the district or know someone who does, please help spread the word. We are also looking for input from District 2 residents on the most important topics they would like applicants to address. (Where is District 2? See this map and select “2017 boundaries.”)
Now, on to this week’s update…
- Safer Streets pledge campaign gets regionwide attention
- Veterans Memorial Park receives $5M grant
- Annual Point in Time Count
- Shedding some light on light bulb disposal
- Apply to serve on our Senior Commission
- A beautiful, family-friendly Carlsbad trail
- Two ways to enjoy arts this week
- Last chance for the winter reading challenge
- No rail service this weekend
- Upcoming meetings
Carlsbad community comes together for traffic safety
You may have seen Carlsbad in the news this week as we officially launched our Safer Streets Together pledge campaign. Here’s a sample of the coverage featuring students from Valley Middle School.
What’s the pledge?
Signing the pledge is easy. Here is what we’re asking you to do:
- Read this statement:
“I care about my community and pledge to do my part to keep Carlsbad’s streets safe for everyone.”
- If you can agree, enter your name on our pledge form.
Take the pledge for safer streets
That’s it! Sort of.
We would especially appreciate it if you could share your commitment with others by putting a Safer Carlsbad window cling on your car window and a Slow Down Carlsbad yard sign in front of your home.
Here’s my window cling:
And here are some of your fellow community members who have already stepped up:
Why is this important?
The City of Carlsbad declared a traffic safety state of emergency last August following an over 200% increase in bike and e-bike collisions since 2019.
Since that time, we’ve made improvements to over 90 miles of local streets, increased traffic enforcement, expanded our school crossing guard program and reprioritized traffic safety related projects.
- But long-term success also requires everyone who uses Carlsbad’s roads to do their part, by committing to safe walking, biking and driving behaviors every day.
- I know people in Carlsbad care about safety and care about each other. By demonstrating your commitment to safe behaviors on our roads, you will be encouraging others to do the same.
- By working together, we can prevent serious injuries and deaths on our roads and the devastating effects they have on local families and other loved ones.
You can pick up yard signs and window clings at the Carlsbad City Library (1775 Dove Lane) and Georgina Cole Library (1250 Carlsbad Village Dr.), and more locations are coming soon.
One of the long-term strategies for making sure people can get around Carlsbad safely, whether walking, biking or driving, is changing the character of city streets.
Please know we are not taking a one size fits all approach. We know that cars will continue to be a main way people get around Carlsbad.
All of the street changes we are making today are based on a set of policies the City Council approved in 2015.
These new policies were created to comply with new state regulations, but not just that.
- They also represent a fundamental shift in how the city will plan and design the street system.
- The change was to recognize the street as not only a place for cars but a public space that should serve all users (elderly, children, bicycles, pedestrians, etc.).
A balanced approach
Another key concept in these policies, officially called the General Plan Mobility Element, emphasizes the need for a balanced approach to street design that prioritizes different modes of travel, such as driving, biking and walking, depending on the size, location and purpose of each street.
- For example, main “arterial” streets like Palomar Airport Road and El Camino Real, are wider and more heavily traveled.
- Cars are given the priority on these kinds of streets.
- Smaller neighborhood streets will give more room to walkers and bikers and be designed to slow down car traffic.
On Tuesday, the city’s Transportation Director gave his semiannual update to the City Council on traffic related projects. There are a LOT of them underway. You can see the full list and learn more in the staff report.
Veterans Memorial Park awarded $5 million state grant
On Tuesday, the City Council approved a resolution accepting a $5 million state grant to help pay for the construction of Veterans Memorial Park, which will soon become Carlsbad’s largest park.
- The money had been earmarked for the project in the state’s 2022-23 budget at the request of Assemblymember Tasha Boerner Horvath.
- The City Council’s action this week was a formal step required by law to accept the funding.
The city and the community have worked hard to make this project a reality and it’s exciting to see it all coming together.
- In July, the City Council approved the master site plan, which followed the master plan report approved in 2021.
- The city is now working on the detailed design and construction plans, based on the master plan and incorporating community feedback.
- The park will be built on a 93.7-acre site near the intersection of Faraday Avenue and Cannon Road.
- More than half the land will remain as undisturbed habitat.
- The park will have spaces for quiet contemplation and reflection, to honor those who have served our country, as well as art, trails, playgrounds and a bike park.
- Construction is expected to start in early 2024.
We appreciate our state officials advocating for projects like this, which contribute so greatly to our excellent quality of life. Learn more on our project webpage.
Annual Point in Time Count
Early this morning (really early!), members of our City Council, city staff and volunteers participated in the nationwide Point in Time Count, which provides a snapshot of the population experiencing homelessness in a given location.
- The data collected through the count is one of the metrics we use to gauge the success of our homeless response plan.
- Volunteers reported at 3:30 a.m. – that kind of commitment is truly appreciated!
- It takes some time for all the data captured to be compiled.
- We expect to have the results from the count in a couple of months.
Read more about our efforts focused on reducing homelessness and its impacts on our community.
What to do with burned-out lightbulbs
As part of our series on creating a more sustainable Carlsbad, this week we’re “shedding some light” on how to get rid of old lightbulbs:
- LED bulbs – These can be recycled. You can take them to retailers, such as home improvement stores, or recycle them at the Palomar Transfer Station if you’re a Carlsbad resident.
- Compact fluorescent lamp bulbs – Also known as CFL bulbs, these contain mercury and require special handling. Residents should take them to the CleanEarth Household Hazardous Waste Collection Facility. They should not be placed in the trash.
- Incandescent bulbs – These old-style bulbs, along with halogen lightbulbs, can’t be recycled and can be thrown away in the trash.
When you’re ready to replace a lightbulb, opt for LEDs. They’re one of the most energy efficient bulbs available, last up to 50,000 hours, give off less heat and are typically made of recycled materials.
Visit our Recycle, Reduce, Reuse webpage for more great sustainability tips on or email us at email@example.com.
Apply to serve on our Senior Commission
If you’re looking for a way to get involved and make a difference in our community, serving on a city commission is a great way to do it. We are now accepting applications for an unscheduled vacancy on our Senior Commission.
- The Senior Commission advises the City Council on the needs and concerns of seniors, including the creation and operation of programs, activities and facilities for older adults.
- It helps make Carlsbad an age-friendly community that promotes wellness and a vibrant quality of life.
- Members are nominated by the Mayor and appointed by the City Council.
- The current vacancy is for a term that expires in September 2025.
- You can apply online. The process is easy.
- Applicants must live in Carlsbad and be registered to vote here.
- Applications are due by noon Feb. 21.
A fun trail to try
Since the weather has dried up a bit, it’s the perfect time to go for a hike on one of the city’s beautiful trails. If you’re looking for a place to start, we have a great recommendation: the 0.7-mile Hidden Valley trail. It’s a short, easy hike that’s fun for the whole family.
Hidden Valley Trail
Parking: At the business parking lot on Hidden Valley Road
The trail crosses a preserve that includes southern cottonwood and willow trees, coastal sage scrub and southern mixed chaparral, among other habitat types, with the sounds of Encinas Creek in the background. It also gives you a chance to spot the Bell’s Vireo, a small riparian bird that’s on the state and federal endangered species lists.
Watch this video for a sneak peek at the trail and download the GoHike Carlsbad app for more details before you head out.
Two ways to enjoy the arts this week
Amazing cultural arts programs are part of what makes Carlsbad such a great place to live. If you’re looking for some new ways to experience art, we’ve got two options coming up.
Showtime @ The Schulman
Left Coast Quintet, one of San Diego County’s most sought-after musical groups, is performing in Carlsbad on Saturday as part of our popular Showtime @ The Schulman series.
This five-piece ensemble is known for their lively shows featuring a repertoire of iconic movie soundtracks, classical pieces and jazz arrangements. We’re excited to host them at the Schulman. It promises to be a great night.
Showtime @ The Schulman – Left Coast Quintet, Saturday, Jan. 28, 7:30 p.m. Schulman Auditorium
Dove Library Complex, 1775 Dove Lane Learn more
Wednesday film series
If movies are more your speed, don’t miss the critically acclaimed film, The Woman King, screening next week as part of our Wednesday Film Series. Starring Viola Davis, this historical drama is inspired by true events that took place in the Kingdom of Dahomey, in the 18th and 19th centuries.
The Woman King, Action, Drama, History (2022, PG-13, 2h 15m) – Wednesday, Feb. 1 6 p.m. Free
Schulman Auditorium Dove Library Complex, 1775 Dove Lane
Seating is limited and is first come, first served. This film is the first of several we’ll be showing in February in honor of Black History Month. I’ll share more about that next week. In the meantime, you can see the full schedule on our website.
Last chance for the winter reading challenge
The Winter Reading Challenge ends on Tuesday, Jan. 31. We set a goal to read for 115,000 minutes, or about one minute per Carlsbad resident. We are so close to reaching our goal! In fact, we’ve logged 103,898 minutes of reading so far.
You can help us reach our goal by logging your reading on our Beanstack site or the Beanstack mobile app.
No rail service this weekend
Please be aware there will be no COASTER or Amtrak rail service between Oceanside and San Diego this weekend, Jan. 28-29. This is a scheduled shutdown, one of several planned throughout the year to give crews safe access to do work that’s needed along the rail line.
You can find a full list of planned weekend closures on this schedule on the North County Transit District website. (Click on COASTER at the tab at the top of the page.)
Meanwhile, limited Amtrak passenger service will resume on weekends between San Diego and Orange County starting on Feb. 4. The tracks in south San Clemente have been closed to passenger rail service for four months, after officials noticed movement of the tracks and the adjacent hillside.
Amtrak announced this week that crews have stabilized the area and officials have cleared the way for weekend rail service to resume. Full passenger service is expected to be back in March. You can learn more on Amtrak’s website.
Get involved: Upcoming meetings
The next City Council meeting will be held Feb. 7 at 5 p.m. in the City Council chamber.
We have two public meetings scheduled next week:
Feb. 1, 5 p.m. – Planning Commission
Feb. 2, 6 p.m. – Arts Commission
Please be safe on our roads as you get out to enjoy our beautiful city. I’ll be back next week with more updates.
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.
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