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City to Install Needed Signal on Busy Harbor Boulevard

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Dear Street Smart:

We need a stoplight at the corner of Vista del Mar and Harbor Boulevard in Ventura.

It is difficult for traffic coming down Vista del Mar from the Ventura Freeway to turn safely because curves on Harbor make for poor visibility.

Also, traffic on Harbor is moving so fast that it adds an extra risk for cars trying to turn onto it from Vista del Mar.

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I fear that an accident will occur if this problem is not addressed soon.

Laura Davison, Ventura

Dear Reader:

The city is aware of the problems caused by the high volume of traffic on Harbor Boulevard.

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To address the matter, the City Council in December agreed to spend about $200,000 to install a signal at Harbor and San Jon Road, which is just down the road from Vista del Mar.

“San Jon was the more logical place for a signal because it is more congested,” City Engineer Rick Raives said.

The new signal should be installed in March, he says.

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Dear Street Smart:

Wouldn’t it be nice if Caltrans fixed the striping at the westbound Stearns Street off-ramp of the Simi Valley Freeway? (There is no way that I can possibly refer to it as the Ronald Reagan Freeway.)

The way it is now, one lane is marked for traffic turning left and the other is shared by vehicles going straight and those turning right.

This causes problems because if you want to turn right on red, you can easily get stuck behind somebody waiting for the signal to change so that they can go straight.

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It seems to me that traffic would move along much more smoothly if cars turning right did not have to share a lane with cars going straight.

Instead, cars turning left and cars going straight should share a lane. This is the way the lanes used to be marked.

Why the change?

David F. Boeshar, Simi Valley

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Dear Reader:

The change in striping was made several years ago at the request of the city, says Luu Nguyen, traffic engineer with the state Department of Transportation.

The city had received complaints from truck drivers who said they would often get stuck in the right lane and be forced to turn right.

Caltrans investigated the problem and found that there was enough traffic to warrant the change in striping.

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As for delays for right-turning cars now caused by having to share a lane with motorists going straight, Nguyen sent a traffic crew out to the site to observe the flow of traffic.

The study found that, at most, traffic turning right is delayed one signal cycle by traffic going straight.

“This is a minor inconvenience for a few drivers,” Nguyen said. “And it helps traffic move along more smoothly overall.”

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Dear Street Smart:

I’m writing about an annoying delay on Los Angeles Avenue in Moorpark.

Turning left onto Tierra Rejada Road from westbound Los Angeles Avenue would be much simpler if cars were allowed to turn when the light is green.

As it is now, cars can only turn left when there is a green left-turn arrow. Even though there is a green light for traffic going straight and no oncoming traffic, left-turning cars must wait.

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Many cars turn left at this intersection, and anything that would prevent them from causing traffic backups would be a big help.

Billy Kraemer, Moorpark

Dear Reader:

No way, nohow, will cars be permitted to turn left on green, says Bob Houle, Caltrans traffic engineer.

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There is just too much oncoming traffic on Los Angeles to make such a change safe, he says.

However, Caltrans does plan to lengthen the left-turn pocket to ease the problem of turning traffic spilling into other lanes, Houle says.


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