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Commission dismisses cluster mailboxes on Mackinnon Ave.

Individual mailboxes partly block sidewalk access on Mackinnon Avenue, but the Encinitas Traffic and Public Safety Commission declined to switch to cluster mailboxes.
Individual mailboxes partly block sidewalk access on Mackinnon Avenue, but the Encinitas Traffic and Public Safety Commission declined to switch to cluster mailboxes.
( / Jared Whitlock)

Citing a lack of public support, the Encinitas Traffic and Public Safety Commission on Jan. 11 declined to pursue cluster mailboxes on Mackinnon Avenue, between Birmingham Drive and the Encinitas Community Park in Cardiff.

Most of the 12 individual mailboxes on the east side of the road partially block sidewalk access, particularly for strollers, wheelchairs and children’s bikes, a resident’s email recently pointed out. In response, city staff floated the idea of replacing the individual mailboxes with cluster mailboxes, a box that collects mail for multiple people.

But commission members said changes aren’t necessary, largely because the agenda item didn’t draw any public speakers.

“I personally would not want to institute something where there doesn’t seem to be much public support, except for one gentleman that complained,” Commissioner Peter Kohl said.

Rob Blough, the city’s traffic engineer, said he mailed notifications to those on the street about the commission exploring whether to switch to cluster mailboxes.

Utility poles and other things on the road also impede pedestrians, although those would be more complicated to relocate, city staff members said.

While commissioners opted against the proposal, they said if residents are interested in traffic calming on the street, the commission would consider that in the future.

A neighborhood petition in 2011 called for traffic-calming infrastructure due to concerns over vehicle speed and the number of cars on Mackinnon Avenue, from Birmingham Drive to the Mackinnon Avenue overpass.

The city held off on any changes to that stretch of road to see how a new all-way stop sign at the Encinitas Community Park entrance would impact traffic. Vehicle speeds there are down, with the average car traveling at 24.8 mph, compared to 30.5 mph in 2011, according to a city analysis.

Traffic volumes in the area have increased, but are expected to fall once Santa Fe Drive construction finishes this summer, according to city staff.

Commissioners James Lindsay and Maryam Babaki were absent from the meeting.


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