Barriers to come down next week

Barriers to come down next week
The orange and white barriers meant to prevent vehicles from potentially driving over a bluff along San Elijo Avenue will be coming down next week. File photo

ENCINITAS — The white and orange barriers that have lined a bluff along San Elijo Avenue and have riled residents over the perceived visual blight will be coming down next week, officials with the North County Transit District said this week.

The transit district will begin replacing the barriers with rail ties Monday, said Dahvia Lynch, the district’s chief planning officer. The work is expected to be completed by Oct. 16.

“We may add more rail ties to other portions of the right of way in the future, but for now will be focusing on the areas where the temporary barriers were placed in order to expedite the removal of those barriers,” Lynch said in an email.

During the removal, parking will not be allowed along the section of the bluff along San Elijo Avenue.

Transit district crews placed the barriers along the bluff, which is owned by the district, in early spring, after concerns arose that drivers were parking too close to the bluff’s edge and could potentially drive over it, crashing onto the train tracks below.

Residents immediately panned the barriers, questioning the need for them and saying that they degraded the views and the appearance of the area.

One of the harshest critics was Encinitas Deputy Mayor Catherine Blakespear, who wrote a letter to the Transit District in March asking for the barriers to be immediately removed. The Transit District rebuffed the request, again citing safety concerns.

Blakespear expressed her gratitude about the upcoming change in an email Tuesday afternoon.

“I am thrilled that these eyesores along our coast will finally be removed,” she said.

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