By Miriam Raftery
June 13, 2019 (El Cajon) -- At its June 11th meeting, the El Cajon City Council received a presentation from Hasan Ikhrata, Executive Director of the San Diego Regional Association of Governments (SANDAG) about the new vision being formulated by the regional planning agency. After Mr. Ikhrata presented SANDAG’s “Five Big Moves” presentation, the City Council unanimously voted to support Mayor Bill Wells, sending a letter to SANDAG spelling out El Cajon’s position on the TransNet future spending.
According to SANDAG’s website, “the Five Big Moves will be used to identify transportation solutions for critical connections throughout the region as part of San Diego Forward: The 2021 Regional Plan. The 5 Big Moves will set the framework for a new transportation vision for our region that will help meet the San Diego region’s environmental goals, add capacity to the freeway system, and create compelling transportation alternatives to driving. The 2021 Regional Plan will synchronize the 5 Big Moves to deliver a fully integrated, world class transportation system for the San Diego region.”
The Five Big Moves are:
Complete Corridors: The backbone of a complete transportation system that leverages technology, pricing, and connectivity to add capacity and repurpose how both highways and local roads are used.
Transit Leap: A complete network of high-capacity, high-speed, and high-frequency transit services that incorporates new transit modes and improves existing services.
Mobility Hubs: Places of connectivity where a variety of travel options converge to deliver seamless travel experiences in the heart of where we live, work and play.
Flexible Fleets: On-demand, shared, electric vehicles that personalize travel options between transit and Mobility Hubs along the network of Complete Corridors.
Next Operating System: An integrated platform that will serve as the “brain” of our region’s future transportation system.
But Mayor Wells’ letter states that before exploring new projects, SANDAG has an obligation to the voters to complete projects identified in the 2004 TransNet ballot measure. “Unfortunately 14 highway projects have yet to be funded,” he says, noting that many of these are in East County, including key improvements to SR 52 connectors to SR 125, SR 67, and I-15 as well as I-8.
The Council made the point to Mr. Ikhrata that the voters passed the TransNet ballot measure to fund increased road and highway capacity and to “reprogram” voter approved funds to mass transit was contrary to voters’ wishes. The letter urges SANDAG to oppose any modifications to the plan approved by the voters in 2004.
“It’s important that we make sure that SANDAG knows what our expectations are—that promised projects like the 67 and the 52 are completed,” Mayor Wells concludes.