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Mission Flats Residents Speak Out Against the Opening of El Horno Street

We have previously made the suggestion that El Horno Street should be opened to through traffic as a traffic mitigation measure during the I-5/Ortega interchange construction.  We have also reported that the San Juan Chamber of Commerce has also recently suggested that El Horno be temporarily opened to through traffic.  Even the Register has picked up the story, so you knew it was only a matter of time before the opposition made itself known.  Even though El Horno was not on agenda, last night a number of El Horno Street and Mission Flats residents spoke at the San Juan Capistrano City Council meeting in opposition to the Chamber’s El Horno Street proposal.  From the Patch article:

Eight residents spoke, others held signs and the council was presented with a petition with 100 signatures of those living in the city’s second oldest neighborhood who say opening the underpass would make their lives a nightmare.

“It’s a solution that’s not really a solution,” said Orrie Brown.

And elsewhere in the article:

Many residents noted that the neighborhood features narrow streets, no sidewalks and lots of pedestrian traffic with many of those on foot being children.

We continue to think that opening El Horno Street to through traffic, while a short term inconvenience for local residents, is for the greater good of the San Juan Capistrano community.  Further, Mission Flats residents should try to negotiate implementation of the Historic Town Center Master Plan’s aesthetic upgrades to the El Horno underpass, and secure a guaranteed sunset date for re-closing El Horno as part of any City Council action to open El Horno during construction.  But the benefits of adding a third east/west detour route during the construction project seems too important to ignore.

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