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College Avenue to get 2 traffic signals

SAN DIEGO _ Two new traffic signal lights are in the works for a busy stretch of College Avenue, one at Arosa Street and the other at Adams Avenue.

City Councilwoman Marti Emerald said an important step has been taken in securing funds for the installation of much-needed traffic lights.

The Crossroads Redevelopment Project Area Committee has voted to recommend funding for the lights. The Public Safety and Neighborhood Services Committee, chaired by Emerald, is scheduled to hear this item at its Feb. 17 meeting.

Emerald has been working on this project since August, although area residents have been asking for relief from fast-moving traffic on College Avenue for more than a decade. The signal light at College Avenue and Arosa Street was approved in 2001 but never installed.

The College/Adams intersection was recently evaluated and warrants a traffic signal, Emerald said.

“I have received numerous complaints about the danger to vehicles trying to enter or leave the El Cerrito neighborhood,” she said. “The addition of both signals will help pedestrians and vehicles while addressing the concerns of Soria Drive residents who would be impacted by the installation of just the Arosa Street signal.”

With a church, synagogue, seminary, senior center and an apartment building all located in the area, the new traffic lights will help pedestrians crossing College Avenue. Pedestrian warning lights would not be effective because traffic moves so quickly, and it is a long walk, especially for seniors, to El Cajon Boulevard or Montezuma Road to cross College Avenue safely at a signal light.

Residents of Soria Drive, which parallels College Avenue on the west, were opposed to the plan until the Adams Avenue light was approved. “I appreciate the concerns of the residents on Soria Drive who do not want to see their street impacted by an increase in traffic, as motorists avoid a signal light,” Emerald said.

Since November, city traffic engineers and members of the El Cerrito community and the larger College Area worked out their issues. The solution was to install the two signal lights simultaneously, which will be synchronized to help pedestrians and drivers.

“This is what redevelopment is really about,” Emerald said. “Everyone in the community came
together and worked out their differences and the neighborhood will be safer.”