Coronado mulls options for renovating toll booth plaza

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CORONADO, Calif. -- Ever since the toll booths were removed in 2002, residents have complained that the entryway to Coronado is anything but welcoming. That could soon be changing.

“‘It’s sort of fallen into disrepair, so over the years our neighbors and City Council wanted another chance to look if we could beautify that entrance,” said Coronado Mayor Casey Tanaka.

The proposal to renovate the toll booth plaza was first presented to the City Council in November of 2013. There are six options:

  1.  Improve the existing toll booths at a cost of less than $5 million.
  2. Remove the structure at a cost of $5 million.
  3.  Place a roundabout at a cost of $10 million.
  4. Create a boulevard with park space on either side
  5. A variation of plan No. 4 with a curved road. This could also cost about $10 million.
  6. The “cut and cover.” This is the most imaginative of the solutions. The roadway would be placed under 11 acres of new park and could cost $50 million.

The city hired an engineering and consulting firm to come up with these ideas. Last month, the company held an open workshop, visited 12 community groups and conducted an online survey. The top three choices were renovating the toll booths as is, the “cut and cover” and the most popular roundabout option.

From here, the proposals will be taken back to the City Council as early as August for a vote. They could choose to do nothing or pick one of the three. City engineer Ed Walton said they are looking at using federal grant money to help pay for one of these projects.

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