Anyone with questions about past, present and-or future road projects for Ramona will want to attend the Transportation Summit hosted by the Ramona Community Planning Group (RCPG) in the Charles R. Nunn Performing Arts Center at Olive Peirce Middle School, 1521 Hanson Lane, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 9.
Open to the public, the summit will feature representatives from California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), California Highway Patrol (CHP), San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) and San Diego County Department of Public Works (DPW).
County Supervisor Dianne Jacob will also participate.
Ramona planning group member Jim Piva, chairman of the planning group’s Trails and Transportation Subcommittee and a member of the Highway 67 Subcommittee, will serve as summit moderator.
Note cards will be distributed at the event for residents to write their questions in advance. No questions or comments will be allowed to be voiced from the floor.
Those representing the various agencies will give five- to 10-minute presentations and “will talk in laymen’s terms,” said Piva. They will explain the road projects, how much money will be spent and when the projects will be built.
The summit was proposed by RCPG member Bob Hailey after some residents spoke out in opposition to the proposed southern bypass and Ramona Street extension at a planning group meeting. Hailey stressed that the summit should be conducted by the planning group and not by the county.
“We really want to show that the planning group is the go-to committee for transportation issues and roads,” Piva said.
Some of the road projects to be reviewed will be the Dye Road extension, Ramona Street extension, San Vicente Road improvements, the southern bypass and state Route 67 improvements.
Piva said people often confuse Caltrans’ top five list of road improvements with the county’s top 10 list. Both will be discussed at the summit. Any road projects with state Route 67 and Route 78 are handled by Caltrans, explained Piva. All other roads in Ramona fall under county jurisdiction.
Piva and other members of the Highway 67 Subcommittee met with Caltrans, DPW and SANDAG on April 22 to discuss changes to the intersection of Route 67 and Dye/Highland Valley roads and to lay out the format of the Transportation Summit. The groups met again May 6 and were scheduled to have a run-through for the summit on June 2. Piva said they have been able to establish a team-type format.
The review of the Route 67 and Dye/Highland Valley intersection, which involved both Caltrans and the DPW, resulted in a change in the timing of the signals to move traffic through quicker during peak times. The short-term fix to ease traffic congestion cost nothing and has appeared to increase traffic flow and decrease waiting times.
Steve Bauer, with Caltrans Signal Operations, said Caltrans is continuing to look at that intersection for ongoing improvements.
One of the recent changes, he explained, involved boosting the Route 67 northbound green light time from 160 seconds to 200 seconds during the late afternoon, from about 3:30 to 7 p.m.
“That’s a lot of vehicles that can move through that intersection,” Bauer said.
So far, he added, he has not received any complaints from people using the side streets during that time. Bauer said he will attend the Transportation Summit.