Reduce speed limit in Descanso Junction
We, the following residents / business owners / property owners and visitors, are extremely concerned about the 55 mile per hour speed limit on Highway 79 at Descanso Junction, and request that Caltrans reduce it to 35 mph.
Background / Rationale
Over the years, many of us have expressed concern with the 55 mph speed limit in Descanso Junction.
Some of the relevant factors at this location that justify a much lower speed limit, include the following.
- Multiple businesses on either side of the road, within 25 feet of the travel lanes: restaurant, antique shops, real estate office, convenience store
- Multiple residences on either side of the road, on very small parcels, several of which are within 25 feet of the travel lanes
- Very awkward intersection with Riverside Drive, as it is located on a curve
- Limited line of sight traveling south on 79 before you reach the Riverside Drive intersection referenced above
- Parking on both sides of the road, including cars backing into traffic from both sides of the road from the restaurant, antique shops, convenience store and real estate office
- Single lane of traffic in each direction, with no median, turn lanes and/or shoulders that would allow vehicles to safely move over to avoid other vehicles and/or pedestrians in the case of emergency
- On weekends, these businesses attract much-needed visitors/tourists from out of the area, who often aren't aware of the dangers of exiting their vehicles and/or crossing the highway as pedestrians, creating many near-miss situations
Despite all of the above obvious risk factors, the speed limit on this section of Highway 79 is 55 miles per hour. To put that in context, 55 mph is the highest speed allowed anywhere on Highway 79 (!) - so it appears that the authorities having jurisdiction on this matter make no distinction between this densely developed residential / retail area, and the rural areas on either side of it.
Having said that, it is very likely that the speed limit here will be greatly reduced immediately after and as a direct result of a preventable tragedy, such as a pedestrian being hit by a vehicle, as it is not a matter of "if" but "when" someone is seriously maimed and/or killed here.
So in the hopes of avoiding a preventable tragedy, while at the same time improving the quality of life of everyone that lives, does business and/or drives through Descanso Junction, we request that Caltrans reduce the speed limit in Descanso Junction to 35 miles per hour.