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Opinion

Letters/Opinion: September 2019

Bike lanes, underpasses and StreetScape

I read Mayor Blakespear’s editorial with great interest. It seems the Mayor now is beginning to understand that a truly safe bike lane completely separates cyclists from cars.

Conspicuously absent was any mention of StreetScape, the design of which is deeply flawed when it comes to cycling safety alone.

Perhaps the Mayor can extend some of her bike safety commitment to Encinitas and Leucadia and accept the railtrail Cardiff extension offer. The rail trail is not only attractive in design, but it is safe utilization of space and it leaves auto traffic on 101 undisturbed.

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Another project that should take precedent over StreetScape is the proposed train track underpasses. These underpasses create safe neighborhood connections across the tracks and encourage foot traffic to 101 and the beaches. The underpasses also facilitate riding bikes to school and shops. The underpass projects need to be pushed to the head of the construction line.

There are a number of options available to make our community more green and pedestrian and cyclist friendly. Our city council along with community input should vigorously explore options beyond the current Streetscape proposal.

Eileen Natuzzi, MD, MPH, FACS

Encinitas

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Physically protected bike lane on Hwy 101 — what could possibly go wrong?

Those of us who ride bicycles to meet some of our commuting and other transportation needs — the real “poster children” in fighting transportation-related air pollution and global warming — have severe reservations about what is falsely being touted as an “upgrade” from the current Class II bicycle lanes along Coast Highway 101 in south Cardiff. In truth, bike lanes that have served cyclists well for decades are to be eliminated and replaced by a combined sidewalk, jogging path, vehicle loading/unloading zone (surfboards, beach umbrellas, coolers, strollers, etc.), and dangerously cluttered path suitable only for casual, pedestrian-speed cycling. We need safe and efficient facilities for motorists, for serious bicyclists, and for slower foot traffic, and we can achieve this with a bit of thought and better planning. Dismissing the valid concerns and interests of transportation cyclists as “the 0.5 percent of the population” is not a constructive argument.

Citizens of Encinitas, please speak up against this poorly conceived plan and demand that we do better. We should explore traffic calming and reduced speed limits and, at a bare minimum, sharrows and prominent “Bikes May Use Full Lane” signage. Narrowing the unused center divide, reducing travel lane width to the legal minimum of 10 feet, and narrowing the proposed multi-use path (which is deceivingly being touted as a Class IV bikeway), just might give us enough road width to preserve our bike lanes.

Leucadia

5G cell tower threat in Encinitas: We have each other’s backs

On Aug. 21, the Encinitas City Council passed an urgency ordinance that will allow 5G in every corner of the residents’ lives — home, school, and work. The residents of Encinitas should be outraged because no attempt was made to protect them from 5G towers that are going to literally be in their front yards. The FCC, EPA, and FDA admit they do not have a single study proving 5G is safe. 5G is virtually untested but for recently declassified experiments by the CIA in the 1970s where the millimeterwave was found to be harmful. Here is the message I would like my friends and family in Encinitas to share with their mayor and city council members.

Encinitas is an environmentally-minded community. We care about the land, the water and the air. But our most precious resource is our residents. We have each other’s backs. And we will have each other’s backs through this unquestionably dangerous imposition of 5G in our community. Instead of protecting the residents, the city chose to hire telecom attorney Jonathan Kramer. Mr. Kramer is not hired by municipalities to protect the residents, but rather to help telecom in its quest to expand. If you do not give us substantial setbacks and preferably an outright residential ban, here’s how we will have each other’s backs:

We will track radiation sickness symptoms among our fellow citizens. We will purchase the best measuring devices on the market and when we find towers that are over the limit, we will call in experts to quantify the levels of radiation in irrefutable ways. We will be holding the city and the carriers accountable to the fullest extent of the law. If Jonathan Kramer told the council members you are immune because of Section 704 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, he failed to tell you that Section 704 protects you only so long as the carrier stays within the safety limit. And we know from investigating super-4G/5G that staying within the safety limits is not possible. Thus you have exposure and you need to know that we are watching, and we are putting you on notice.

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Who do you work for, City Council? Do you work for telecom? Do you take money from telecom for your campaigns? Or do you work for the people who elected you and the people who can work to defeat you in the next election? If you fail to have our backs and amend this ordinance, we promise you we will not only have each other’s backs, but we will have your seats on City Council.

Susan Foster

Susan Foster is a medical writer from Rancho Santa Fe and an Honorary Firefighter with the San Diego Fire Department. She has advocated for the firefighters to keep cell towers off their stations for two decades. Foster advocated for a 300’ setback for all fire stations in San Diego County from 5G towers, passed by San Diego County Board of Supervisors on Aug. 7, 2019.


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