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Conejo Valley : Scenic Road Status Request Is Rejected

A state advisory panel has rejected a proposal to award scenic highway status to a 16-mile stretch of the Ventura Freeway that passes through Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village and Agoura Hills.

But members of the Caltrans Departmental Transportation Advisory Committee, which met Friday in Sacramento, said the plan will be reconsidered after Caltrans prepares guidelines for a new urban scenic highway designation.

Elected officials in the three Conejo Valley cities have said the stretch of freeway deserves recognition because it provides majestic views of the Santa Monica Mountains.

They also said scenic highway status would help them obtain grants and take other steps to enhance the view by removing billboards and aboveground utility lines.

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Some state committee members argued last week that the segment doesn’t meet the existing guidelines for scenic highways, most of which run through pristine rural areas with little or no development nearby.

The committee urged that the Conejo Valley cities’ application be placed on hold until the criteria for the new urban scenic highway designation are prepared later this year.


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