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After power line explosion on Agate Street, readers seek clarification on evacuation routes: here’s the info 

In Tuesday’s edition, Stu News reported on a power line explosion the previous week that sent a live wire crashing down onto Mozambique’s parking lot off Agate Street, where it continued to spark for an hour. 

The incident once again raised concerns about the fire danger posed by above-ground power poles. 

“This Agate explosion could have caused a disastrous fire on a windy day,” council member Toni Iseman noted. 

Following publication of the story, readers wrote to Stu News asking for clarification on the two different undergrounding bonds intended for the 2018 ballot, especially with regard to the evacuation routes identified by the City. 

In summary, here are the evacuation routes recommended for undergrounding.

Evacuation routes recommended for undergrounding

Laguna Canyon Road (Laguna Canyon Frontage to El Toro Road; includes transmission poles; the cost will be determined with the Laguna Canyon Road Master Plan)

Monterey (Hawthorne to Linden) 

Thalia (Temple Terrace to 350’ Southwest of Glenneyre) Glenneyre (Laguna to Thalia)

Glenneyre (Calliope to Arch)

Bluebird Canyon (Eastman to Cress) 

Pacific Coast Highway (Diamond to 200’ Southeast of Upland) 

Monterey/Virginia (West to 5th)
Temple Hills (Northeast and Southwest of San Remo)

Park (Wendt to 500’ East of St. Ann’s) 

Virginia (7th to 9th)
San Joaquin (Hillcrest to Alley) 

The total cost, (not including Laguna Canyon Road), is estimated at $20,489,000. 

Click on photo for a larger image

Slide from the City’s Oct 24 Power Point presentation showing evacuation routes

Whalen explains the two proposed ballot measures

Whalen explained the two proposed ballot measures as follows: “My goal is to place two ballot measures on the November 2018 ballot so voters will have a chance to vote on a citywide financing plan. 

“One ballot measure, to be voted on by all voters in the City, would be to approve financing to underground Laguna Canyon Road and the other evacuation routes. These are safety improvements that benefit all of us citywide. 

“The second ballot measure would apply only to the areas in the city that are not yet undergrounded. Residents in these areas will be asked to approve and pay for the cost of undergrounding their own neighborhoods. This approach makes sense in that it avoids having neighborhoods that have already paid to underground from paying a second time, which would not be fair.”

Currently, a survey is underway to gauge residents’ willingness to support two different bonds intended for the 2018 ballot. Each deals with financing the undergrounding of the poles, with a primary focus on evacuation routes. Feedback from the survey, it is hoped, will help determine financial strategies going forward.

Results of the survey will be available at the Feb 6 council meeting

Whalen notes that the City is scheduled to receive a full report from the polling firm at the February 6 Council meeting. “At that time, we’ll begin to evaluate the next steps based on what we hear back from voters. The Council is committed to figuring out the best plan to improve public safety in the city,” Whalen says. 

“It has been suggested by a couple of individuals that the City can fund undergrounding out of its existing budget.  This is untrue and not feasible,” he added. “We are looking at a multi-million dollar program that will only be realized if voters support a bond issue to make it happen. I remain optimistic that our residents will vote on the side of public safety.”

Shaena Stabler is the Owner, Publisher & Editor.

Dianne Russell is our Associate Editor & Writer.

Michael Sterling is our Webmaster & Designer.

Alexis Amaradio, Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Lynette Brasfield, Marrie Stone, Maggi Henrikson, Samantha Washer, and Suzie Harrison are our writers and/or columnists.

Mary Hurlbut and Scott Brashier are our photographers.

Stacia Stabler is our Social Media Manager & Writer.

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