By Eric Heinz
The ninth annual State of the City was, for the most part, like many of the addresses that came before it. Mayor Kathy Ward praised the city’s efforts in passing certain legislation, the enhanced transportation options since La Pata’s opening and the youth of San Clemente.
But just as the Saddleback Memorial Medical Center was the looming issue at last year’s State of the City, the new proposals put forth by the Transportation Corridor Agencies (TCA) for new toll roads through San Clemente has been a topic of contention (once again).
Some of the proposals would cut through San Clemente or certain neighborhoods.
“I would be derelict in my duties as mayor if I did not mention a current idea of extending the 241 toll road through San Clemente. This is a very serious issue for our city,” Ward said. “There is no extension that ends at or slices through San Clemente that would be acceptable. This extension would destroy our city.”
Ed Sachs, Foothill/Eastern TCA board chairman, submitted a response to Ward’s comments in an email on Tuesday, April 11.
“South Orange County has said loud and clear they expect us to solve the growing traffic problem in the region, which exists most prevalently along the I-5 North/South corridor to the county line,” Sachs stated in the email. “That is why we began engaging the public and soliciting their traffic solutions ideas of which we now have 17. All those ideas must now be analyzed, studied and screened through a transparent and open process to find the best solution with the least impact.”
TCA was a sponsor of the State of the City, which was hosted by the San Clemente Chamber of Commerce.
TCA had a joint board meeting scheduled for Thursday, April 13, and the San Clemente Times will follow-up with information regarding the toll road proposals in the near future.