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Everyone Into the Pool

The second car-pool lane on Orange County freeways opened Wednesday morning on a 5-mile stretch of the San Diego Freeway northbound between the Springdale Street overpass in Westminster and the San Gabriel River Freeway. It is a welcome addition to what will ultimately be a network of more than 100 miles of commuter lanes on county freeways.

The new lane is the first segment of other commuter lanes that will run along the San Diego Freeway between the San Gabriel and the junction of the Santa Ana Freeway in Irvine. That project is scheduled to be completed by July.

As more car-pool lanes open, they should encourage more motorists to break their one-car, one-person habit and band together to save time, money and stress in daily commuting. Car pools and van pools are no cure-all for Orange County’s growing traffic congestion. And not everyone can use them because they need their cars in their jobs. But the car-pool lanes are a realistic and workable alternative for many drivers.

They become more attractive as motorists sit alone in clogged traffic in the freeway’s “fast” lane, watching commuters in the car-pool lane zipping by. Employers should encourage their use to relieve traffic congestion and help make the daily commute faster for everyone.

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