Keep Portola Sane
Keep Portola Sane
Ecology Action (https://ecoact.org/poweredbyme/) is responsible for the “temporary” Portola changes that they intend to make permanent. These changes include the reduction of through lanes, addition of extraneous turn lanes (that already existed), and finally the removal of through lanes for additional public parking. Note: the bike lanes and the walkways already existed.
These changes cause traffic all the way through Portola and often back up the already abysmal 41st intersection. I can already imagine this being a problem for emergency workers as it is near impossible to navigate Portola in a reasonable manner. How will emergency workers handle a blocked Portola AND 41st when there are out-of-towners stuck in the water during a swell (for example).
These plans were made “publicly” behind the neighborhood's back. Not one person in my neighborhood was aware of the changes until it was already finished. Not one person in my neighborhood was present or aware of Ecology Action’s meetings for this project. This project was made for my neighborhood by people who don’t live in this neighborhood and without the neighborhood's input.
At the event that Ecology Action hosted, they touted these changes like they did locals a favor. They (Ecology Action and Manu Koenig) touted how no city / county planner was present for the changes and boy… does it show. They think more traffic on Portola will mean less car traffic and more bike/foot traffic but they FAIL to understand that the amount of tourist AND local car traffic is always increasing. There will always be high through traffic on Portola as it is one of Santa Cruz’s main arteries. There will always be locals running errands and there will always be tourists going down Portola, it is just a fact. The reduction of lanes makes Zero sense at all.
These changes are unsafe, ill planned, inefficient, ineffective and a waste of tax payer dollars. Portola was a completely functioning street with few problems before the arrival of Ecology Action’s changes. They plan to make these changes permanent in early 2022, stretching changes from 41st to 26th ave. Read about the full changes in detail if you have time, it is shocking. I humbly beg my community for aid by raising your voice before this is made final.
Simply put… The Portola project is trying to change Portola, one of Santa Cruz’s main arteries, into some So-Cal project without any local input and at the local's expense.
This petition is asking for the related parties to return and KEEP Portola at its FUNCTIONAL and SAFE form.