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HUNTINGTON BEACH : Cascade Lane Traffic Study to Be Speeded

In an effort to placate Cascade Lane residents who for a year have publicly complained about traffic on their street, City Council members have accelerated an ongoing study of the problem.

City staff members in March will issue an update on the neighborhood’s traffic problem and recommend a solution. Originally, their report was due in June.

The residents, who have formed a group called Homeowners for a Safe Cascade, have regularly attended council meetings to urge that the city install a barricade blocking through traffic on their street.

During the past two years, an increasing number of motorists have used Cascade as an alternative route between Bolsa and McFadden avenues. By using Cascade, drivers are able to avoid often-congested Beach Boulevard and Golden West Street.

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According to a recent city survey, 2,100 cars a day use Cascade Lane, often at high speeds.

The city recently installed a series of stop signs along Cascade and neighboring streets in the housing tract. While this has cut back on traffic, residents complain the situation remains bad.

“We see no reason for a further delay in installing a barricade as soon as possible,” resident Edith Gonzales told the council this week.

Council members have been hesitant to block off the street because fire officials say it would hinder police and fire response in the area. Further, residents on neighboring streets argue that a barricade would shift the traffic problem onto their streets.

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The council, however, has agreed to consider a barricade after reviewing the staff study in March.

Meanwhile, city officials continue to explore the possibility of linking Hoover and Gothard streets, which residents and council members agree would be the best solution to the problem.

According to an updated staff report, connecting those streets beneath the San Diego Freeway would cost $10 million. Huntington Beach and Westminster, which are jointly studying the Hoover-Gothard project, do not have the money to build it. The cities, however, plan to apply for transportation funds made available by Measure M.

Even if full funding is secured, construction on the Hoover-Gothard connector could not get under way before 1994.

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