Posted 10/15/16: Coalition Annual Review of Activities

The Coalition has been very active on behalf of our community this past year in a number of areas. Below is a review of our four primary committees’ work since last year’s Community Meeting and some idea as to what is expected this coming year.

ROADWAY COMMITTEE, Kevin Hagerty, Chair

During 2016, the Roadway Committee was actively involved in the following:

Roadway Medians
• Held quarterly meetings with City staff on median maintenance issues.
• Represented area residents in discussions with City staff on developing recommendations on the amount of the median assessment.

Roadway Paving
• Worked with City staff regarding the successful completion of Phase II of PSPR Roadway Repaving Project (Quarry Driveway to Biscayne Drive).

Point San Pedro Road Traffic and Safety Issues
• Worked with Neighborhood Homeowners Associations along Point San Pedro Road to create a Working Group to examine and identify traffic and safety issues on PSPR and to work with City and County staff on ways to address those issues.
• Worked with the San Pedro School representatives (School District Board Member, School Principle, teachers, and school volunteers) to create a Working Group to examine and identify traffic and safety issues on PSPR that impact the School and to work with City and County staff on ways to address those issues.
• Coordinated and co-sponsored with City and County a community meeting to review PSPR Traffic and Safety Working Group recommendations
• Worked with City and County staff on implementation new speed limits on PSPR that allowed the City and County to enforce speed limits on PSPR

Public Transit
• Met with Marin Transit staff to explore feasibility of some form of public transit to serve East San Rafael
• Worked with Marin Transit staff on developing a survey to determine the specific transit needs of residents in East San Rafael.
• Conducted an on-line transit needs assessment survey of East San Rafael area residents, and employees of businesses and schools.
• Worked with Marin Transit to identify public transit options to serve the identified needs of East San Rafael residents.

Traffic Congestion Mitigation
• Monitored City’s planning efforts to mitigate Downtown traffic related to the planned start of SMART  as it will impact East San Rafael residents.

In the coming year, the Roadway Committee will be continuing its efforts on issues associated with:
• Roadway Medians
• Point San Pedro Road Traffic and Safety Issues
• Public Transit to Serve East San Rafael

Additionally, in response to the large number of concerns about the increase in traffic congestion in the vicinity of City’s Transit Center, the new SMART station and the downtown freeway entrances and exists, the Roadway Committee will be creating a Working Group of representatives from the HOA’s adjacent to Point San Pedro Road. That Group will examine with City staff, the traffic issues in this congested area and will identify possible solutions to address those issues.

MARINA COMMITTEE, Alan Schaevitz & Sara Jensen, Co-Chairs

The Marina Committee of the Pt. San Pedro Road Coalition was originally formed when plans were first proposed for development of the Loch Lomond Marina property. Our concerns then, as they are now, was that any such development be in proper context with surrounding residential communities and enhance our general area. Those plans were quickly put on hold while the City of San Rafael developed revised long-term general plans, called GP2020, which included this property and was adopted in 2004. During that time, the Committee focused on working with our community to guide the development of GP2020 as it pertained to our neighborhoods.

After GP2020 was approved by the City Council, the Committee refocused on the proposed development plans that were re-activated by the property owner. Over the course of the next few years, the Committee was successful in many of its efforts to structure this development to fit within the surrounding community. While we were unable in reducing the density of the development to levels that seemed more fitting to the neighborhood, we were successful in reducing that density from the proposed 150 residential units to the final 81 that was approved by the City Council in 2007. We were also successful in mandating the inclusion of a full-service grocery store rather than the 7-Eleven-type store proposed by the developers.

After 2007, the development was put on hold due to the economic downturn. Construction was finally resumed in 2013 and the Committee focused its efforts on ensuring that development activities adhered to the specifications and restrictions embodied in the construction permits and dealing with emerging items outside of things covered by those permits. To that end, the Committee has a joint meeting every month with the San Rafael Community Development and Public Works Departments, the two departments that are directly responsible for this project. Lately, the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) has also been participating, as they are responsible for approving any activity along the Bay front.

Details on the activities, accomplishments and current issues related to the marina development can be found on this Coalition website. The In-Depth – Loch Lomond Marina pages provide significant details on the background and status of this development and the Committee’s work. The News by Topic – Loch Lomond Marina posts provide regular documentation and updates on our current activities. The Committee posts an update every month following our meeting with the City agencies.

QUARRY COMMITTEE, Dave Crutcher, Chair

The most significant accomplishment of this Committee this past year is the ruling on Monday, September 19, 2016, by Judge Paul M. Haakenson of the Superior Court of California, County of Marin. His decision in the case of Point San Pedro Road Coalition v. County of Marin and the San Rafael Rock Quarry ruled that the County’s approval in 2013, and again in 2015, of a quarrying permit amendment allowing the Quarry to import used asphalt for recycling was an improper expansion of the Quarry’s nonconforming use. The Coalition had asked the court to overturn that approval, and the court agreed. Details on the background leading up to this ruling, the import of this ruling to our community, and a copy of the actual ruling  can be read on the Operating Permit Amendment page.

We hope that this decision will provide new impetus to the County and its staff to hold the Quarry to operating within its lawful constraints, and to act in accordance with California law and the interests of the residents of the Point San Pedro Road corridor. However, this Committee will continue its monitoring of Quarry activities to ensure that all actions are within the constraints defined in their Operating Permit and in the rules and regulations of the County and State.

EMERGENCY PREP COMMITTEE, Milton Davis and Henry Warren, Co-Chairs

The 2016 Emergency Preparation Committees is currently working on these projects:

1. Determining alternative means of communication to prepare for disasters. For example, identifying the main contacts in each HOA to communicate via radio on the third week of each month, or to a time frame to be determined, to check call signs for the 20 associations on the corridor. The recommended Radio is the BaoFeng UV-82HP High Power Dual Band Radio: 136-174mhz (VHF) 400-520mhz (UHF) Amateur (Ham) Portable Two-Way ($62.89 from Amazon).

2. Coordinating National Night Out in Aug. 2017: Pt. San Pedro Road Coalition to sponsor and host convene all HOA emergency-disaster preparedness representatives in our neighborhoods on the Pt. San Pedro corridor to get to know each other and coordinate our emergency preparedness plans.

3. Updating the Pt San Pedro Coalition Disaster web site content, and adding relevant weblinks.

4. NEW INFORMATION: Division 51 and the San Rafael Fire Department have agreed that the 6 local San Rafael Fire Departments are to be our RALLY POINTS in a disaster event.

5. CERT TRAINED NEIGHBORS TO DATE (since 2011):
• Peacock Gap: 23
• Loch Lomond / Villa Real: 11
• Glenwood: 15