Coronado residents upset over proposal to raise speed limit

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CORONADO,  Calif. -- Caltrans shocked a standing-room-only crowd at a Coronado City Council meeting Tuesday when it announced it was going to raise and not lower the speed limit on a pair of streets plagued by pedestrian accidents.

Fourth and Third streets serve as the main corridor in and out of the city and are considered part of a state highway.

Residents wanted speeds lowered, hoping that would help decrease the number of people hit by cars while crossing the street. A few weeks ago, a 70-year-old man was struck and killed by a car.

Caltrans plans on raising the speed limit from 25 to 30 miles an hour because recent surveys showed the average speed in the area is about 34 miles an hour. According to Marcelo Peinado, District 11 Division Chief of Traffic Operations, the state mandates speeds be close to "safe operating average speeds."

"Thirty-four miles an hour is adjusted, rounded up to nearest 5 mph, which is 35 and then we apply a five-mile reduction to 30,"  Peinado explained.

But some residents fear people will take liberties with the new speed limit and drive even faster, making things more dangerous for pedestrians.

"If everyone is going too fast at 25 mph, why would going 30 make things safer? It's just not common sense," said resident Fern Nelson.

The Coronado City Council voted to oppose increasing the speed limits, but the decision is up to Caltrans. The Council plans on asking the city's police department to increase patrols in the area and write more speeding tickets as a way to get people to slow down. It's also looking into adding crossing guards at various intersections to help people safely cross the street.

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  • Emmett McMahon

    I spent close to 30 years working at NASNI (Naval Air Station North Island). Back in the “old days” , those driving in from San Diego either parked downtown or took a bus there and then used a large passenger ferry to get on the base or they used a vehicle ferry to transport them and their car to the island. After the bridge was built the amount of traffic really increased. The employees, either military or civilian, need to be constantly reminded to keep the speed down in the city. I cannot understand why folks driving from the base to the bridge can’t keep the speed limit down for that mile or so tot the bridge.

  • ssites

    This happened in my neighborhood in Clairemont, exact same circumstances. The 25 mph speed limit had “expired” and the “average” speed was 34 mph When traffic police would come to monitor, cars would slow down because they would see the police car. Residential area (houses on one side of the street), cars use this street to avoid Balboa/Genessee, come flying down the street far above 30 mph. We have been complaining for years… backing out of the driveway is a nightmare. Since our street is the emergency access for the fire department, no speed bumps or stop signs can be installed. And yes, the cars ignore the 30 mph just as they did the 25 mph, miss the curve, hit the curb, cross the double yellow line causing near head-on misses, run up on the sidewalk, spin out of control….

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