A San Diego City Council committee Monday unanimously recommended that a toll continue to be charged on the San Diego-Coronado Bay Bridge after the $47.6 million in bonds used to build the bridge have been paid off, expected in July, 1986.
“We should keep the tolls and maybe add to them,” said Mayor Roger Hedgecock, chairman of the City Council Rules Committee, which voted, 5-0, to endorse retention of the toll. Hedgecock also was San Diego’s representative on a task force convened to advise the Legislature on how to spend revenue from the bridge.
The task force has recommended that the toll revenue be spent, after the bonds are retired, on bridge operations and maintenance, and on proposed projects in Coronado and San Diego that would relieve traffic on the bridge, including van and bus pools and a cross-bay ferry system.
“The bridge carries much more traffic than we ever envisioned, because there are more people than ever going to the Navy facilities on North Island,” Hedgecock said. “Traffic will move a lot smoother if we can use the revenues from the bridge to finance future improvements.”
In addition, the task force has recommended that the state pay for a study of the economic feasibility of constructing a four-mile tunnel under Fourth Street in Coronado.