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Photo: Courtesy City of Carlsbad

City of Carlsbad Seeking Input on Tamarack Coastal Project

Carlsbad CA— The City of Carlsbad is seeking input from the community on ways to improve safety, beach access and traffic flow in the area around Carlsbad Boulevard and Tamarack Avenue.

The project covers Carlsbad Boulevard from Redwood Avenue to the south jetty of the Agua Hedionda Lagoon inlet, including a portion of the bluff top area above the Tamarack parking lot. The project also includes proposed improvements that make it easier to get to the Coastal Rail Trail along Tamarack Avenue and new signage for the Coastal Rail Trail along the railroad tracks between Tamarack and Oak Avenue. The project will only involve land owned or controlled by the city, such as the city’s “right of way.”

The city is providing several ways to provide input:

  • Community meeting, Thursday, June 23, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., at the Carlsbad Senior Center, 799 Pine Ave.
  • Online survey: Available starting June 24 on the city website, carlsbadca.gov/input.
  • In person: Project team members will be at the project site on the grassy area near the Tamarack restrooms in the next couple of weeks.

The city is at the very beginning stages of this project and is considering three concepts for the intersection, a four lane design with a traffic signal, very similar to what is there now; a three lane design with a traffic signal; and a two lane design with a roundabout. All of the options include:

  • Improving safety for walkers, joggers, bicyclists and cars
  • Adding more free on-street parking
  • Widening the sidewalk on the west side of Carlsbad Boulevard, including across the lagoon inlet bridge
  • Moving the southbound bus stop out to a more easily accessible location
  • Adding a crosswalk with flashing lights across Carlsbad Boulevard south of Sequoia Avenue to the lagoon trailhead
  • Adding native landscaping, lighting, benches and other elements to make the area more attractive and functional
  • Designating more space to sit and enjoy the view

“The three concepts we’ve developed all have certain trade-offs, and that’s what we are hoping to get feedback on from the public,” said Assistant City Manager Gary Barberio, who is overseeing a variety of coastal improvements in Carlsbad.

After gathering input from the public, the city will refine the concepts and eventually present them to the City Council, along with technical and environmental analyses. According to Barberio, the public will have a chance to weigh in on the revised concepts as well as more detailed designs prior to construction. The city has set aside up to $4 million for these improvements and has obtained grant funding that could be applied to this cost if the final design meets the grant requirements.

The improvements could be started at the end of 2017. The city would schedule construction to avoid peak beach-going times of year.

The City of Carlsbad is working on a number of initiatives to make it easier and safer to get to the beach and travel along Carlsbad Boulevard, the old Highway 101, whether by car, on a bike or by foot. The projects are all based on the Carlsbad Community Vision, a set of nine core values developed through a two year public outreach process. The vision emphasizes maintaining Carlsbad’s small-town beach community character, sustainability, walking, biking and public transportation, open space and the natural environment and active, healthy lifestyles, among others values.

“Each of these projects is being designed in collaboration with the community to ensure we preserve Carlsbad’s unique coastal character,” said Barberio.

Other recent improvements along Carlsbad Boulevard include installing a new walking path, enhancing access to the existing beach trail, widening the main entry to the lot, adding an additional disabled parking spot and sealing and restriping the Ocean Street parking lot; a roundabout, landscaping, public art, sidewalks and bike paths at Carlsbad Boulevard and State Street; new crosswalks between Oak and Hemlock avenues; and improved bike lanes along the entire 6.5 mile length of Carlsbad Boulevard.

Through a partnership with State Parks, which controls most of the beaches in Carlsbad, the city also renovated and took over maintenance of the Tamarack restrooms, the bluff between Tamarack Avenue and the area north of Pine Avenue and landscaping on the upper sea wall.

For more information
Craig Williams, 760-602-2734, craig.williams@carlsbadca.gov