Editorial : Problems Need ’89 Solutions

Depending on whether you are a pessimist or a Pollyanna, you can think of Orange County today as a year closer to gridlock and housing that nobody except the rich can afford or as a county finally ready to solve some of the problems it has wrestled with for decades.

In addition to being the first day of 1989, today also marks the start of the last year of the ‘80s. The booming ‘60s were the greatest decade of growth in Orange County history. But as the county comes to the close of another decade, it still has not been able to solve the problems that the ‘60s population explosion and continued growth have caused.

It would be most satisfying if, before the ‘80s ended, Orange County could:

Find more money to widen and build more freeway lanes.


Relieve some freeway congestion by persuading more motorists to use car and van pools or public transportation--and more employers to stagger work hours.

Provide homes for the homeless.

Build more affordable homes and apartments for middle- and lower-income people to keep the homeless ranks and commuter traffic from growing.

Finally locate a site for another commercial jet airfield to take the pressure off John Wayne Airport and accommodate the growing demands for more passenger air service.

Decide where the new maximum security jail will be built and start building it.

Find more leaders with social consciences.

See the Angels run their first world championship flag up the Anaheim Stadium flag pole (all right, we will even settle for just the American League pennant).

Wouldn’t it be nice not to have to drag all of these issues, unresolved, into another decade next Jan. 1?