In Pacifica City Council chambers June 22, an informative, scripted, and controlled meeting was held on the proposed widening of Highway 1. The San Mateo County Transportation Authority (SMCTA) presented information on its long-standing plan to widen Highway 1 from four to six lanes between the Fassler/Rockaway Beach and Reina del Mar intersections.
The preferred alternative plans, according to SMCTA consulting engineers, actually widen to eight lanes at the Rockaway Beach intersection, including two turn lanes. Many alternatives were listed on one sheet of paper for the first time, and visual diagrams of various alternatives were papered on the walls of the room.
Estimated commute time saved in building this "parkway" is five to seven minutes. The term "freeway" was mistakenly used several times by the moderator, an accomplished public outreach consultant. It didn’t fit the script and a public official was heard to mutter from the back of the room, "It’s not a freeway!"
A key question from the audience (on a form read by the moderator—no town hall style here, thank you) asked about Pacifica City Council’s responsibility in the coming process: What is council's role and how will it influence the process? SMCTA’s Joe Hurley replied that it was "too early to ask that question" but ultimately said that no formal requirement of the council is needed.Public comment on the Calera Parkway Project closes July 22. Mail comments to SMCTA, P.O. Box 3006, San Carlos, CA 94070; fax to 650-508-7938; or email to firstname.lastname@example.org (put "SR1/Calera Parkway" in subject line).