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Mailbag: Season of trolleys winding down

August 23, 2012

Summer trolleys end at 11:30 p.m. Sept. 2. Take a ride on the south route and explore your town.

Stop at Wesley Drive and walk Treasure Island Park or plop down on one of its four gorgeous beaches.

Check out the almost mermaid, "Voyager" by Linda Brunker, near the underground garage, the nearly 50-foot long "fish" mosaic by Dora De Larioson the wall under Montage's northern swimming pool and the four big picnic tables and five small tables on the green near the gazebo where hundreds watch the Emerald Bay and downtown July 4 fireworks.

Go to Aliso Beach and use the under-highway tunnel to walk up to the golf course for a delicious lunch or breakfast or remember there is the cafe on the sand. Take a short walk south and, waves and tides permitting, you'll come to Laguna's internationally listed West Street "gay" beach.

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Another idea is to go to south Table Rock Drive, walk toward the ocean and down 150 steps to Secret Cove, which many say is well worth the steps, and across the street, up Catalina Street one block to a quiet park named the Village Green.

Both the cove and the park are in South Laguna.

Travel to the trolley's south-most stop and visit Salt Creek beach, which has a terrace where smoothies, burgers and hot dogs are served or have a luxe lunch at the Ritz.

Free trolleys was City Councilwoman Toni Iseman's idea and that idea now moves 300,000-plus visitors and locals from here to there with bells ringing all the way.

Roger Carter

Laguna Beach

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Funding is key for Complete Streets

In April 2010 the Complete Streets Task Force identified sources of grant funding for building street infrastructure in Laguna Beach and delivered them to City Council. Identifying funding is the fifth phase of a five-step program to implement Complete Streets Policy; it identifies federal funding for civic projects such as bike-lanes, pedestrian zones and transit stops.

The Orange County Transit Authority published a map to show the allocation of $9.4 million in free grant money to cities in Orange County. Laguna Beach was allocated no money because city staff did not bother to apply for funding nor prepare for grant qualification. To qualify a municipality must have a Bicycle and Pedestrian Management Plan in place, and an approved project for the grant allocation to apply. Laguna has neither.

OCTA is extending a hand to all municipalities around Orange County and can help us solve our transit problems. All we have to do is choose to participate.

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