Bud’s Corner – Broadway in Del Mar

By Bud Emerson

Just spent a week in New York and was flabbergasted to see that Mayor Bloomberg has succeeded in closing a huge section of Broadway to car traffic. That’s right, I said “Broadway,” right in the middle of Times Square. Instead of fighting our way through jammed sidewalks, we strolled down the middle of the street, saw people sitting at small tables with umbrellas and realized cars were deferring to pedestrian traffic.

I was thrilled. It was gratifying to see how humanized Times Square has become. But I couldn’t resist the urge to bellyache about my hometown’s inability to civilize our downtown streets. If the Big Apple could do it, what is Del Mar’s problem? After all, our Community Plan clearly calls for the narrowing of Camino del Mar to achieve a more pedestrian-friendly downtown. We agreed to this plan in the mid-’70s, so what has stymied our decision-makers? I went on quite a toot, ready to come back home and start raising hell as I have for so many years.

Well, what to my wondering eyes do I see when I return? Unbelievably, there is a serious proposal coming before our council to pilot test eliminating one southbound lane on CDM between 15th and 12th streets. This has every chance of really transforming our downtown in a way that no revitalization effort has ever achieved. Instead of being a “pass through” highway to go through Del Mar to get somewhere else, Del Mar could become a place to go to, not go through.

Every year when we have the Art Stroll and close off the street for a few hours, Del Mar becomes that quaint European-type village that our Community Plan envisions. Cars slow down. Cars detour to Interstate 5. Pedestrians rule. Pedestrians meander into shops, stop and talk with neighbors, and seem to enjoy not being in a hurry to get somewhere. This new pilot proposal could make that an everyday phenomenon.

There is a movement alive in the country today to take back our streets. Check it out at livablestreets.com.

We can be justifiably proud of all of our efforts over the years to preserve the small town quality of life we enjoy. Transforming our downtown into a livable street could be the culmination of our Community Plan and put us in the forefront of a national trend of taking back the streets. We can do this. Let’s make it happen.

Related posts:

  1. Bud’s Corner: Roundabouts all around–but not in Del Mar
  2. Bud’s Corner: Around the roundabouts
  3. SD city council says no to selling cars on certain streets
  4. Letters to the Editor: Sept. 19, 2008
  5. Bud’s Corner: A win-win for local businesses

Short URL: http://www.delmartimes.net/?p=2200

Posted by admin on Oct 29, 2009. Filed under Archives, Bud's Corner, Columns, Editorial Columns. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Leave a Reply

Archives

Facebook

Bottom Buttons 1

Bottom Buttons 2

Bottom Buttons 3

Bottom Buttons 4

Bottom Buttons 5

Bottom Buttons 6

LA JOLLA NEWS

RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

RSS RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

  • New Rancho Santa Fe Library Branch Manager welcomes community input
    Rancho Santa Fe Library’s new Branch Manager Haley Kwon has been charmed by the village’s “sweet, down-home” character, the simple pleasure of visiting the local library and people’s enjoyment of a slower speed of time. “It’s a small town and the library is a place for people to connect,” Kwon said. “People have a different sense of time here, they come in t […]
  • Robotics booming at Rancho Santa Fe School
    By Karen Billing At R. Roger Rowe School, 44 percent of first graders are participating in the robotics program this year. The school is fielding 44 robotics teams, including 31 percent of second grade, 23 percent of third grade, 35 percent of fourth grade and 39 percent of fifth grade. In the middle school, there are two FIRST LEGO League (FLL) teams and fi […]
  • Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices honored with Stevie Gold Award
    Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices was recently named Startup of the Year in the 2014 American Business Awards, earning the brokerage the Stevie Gold award. The award was presented at the Fairmont Millennium Park Hotel in Chicago, Illinois. “Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices is among a select few organizations to be entrusted with the Berkshire Hathaway name,” co […]