Keep Los Patrones Parkway a Free Arterial Road

Please fill out this form to let the County of Orange know that we are requesting to keep Los Patrones Parkway a Free arterial roadway.



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As a resident in South Orange County, I am requesting that the County of Orange reject any immediate proposals to turn over Las Patrones Parkway, which has been designated as free arterial roadway, to the Transportation Corridor Agency (TCA) so that it can be part of their SR-241 toll road system. According to the County of Orange Department of Public Work’s (OCDPW) website (http://www.ocpublicworks.com/civicax/inc/blobfetch.aspx?BlobID=65747), Los Patrones Parkway (formerly named “F” Street) was approved by the Orange County Board of Supervisors as an arterial highway providing traffic relief for future proposed development within Rancho Mission Viejo Community Development, LLC. (RMV) and South Orange County. The Las Patrones Parkway Project will be a newly built arterial highway with four lanes (two in each direction) with connections at Oso Parkway, Chiquita Canyon Drive, and Cow Camp Road, which is represented on the region’s Master Plan of Arterial Highways. Upon completion of the Las Patrones Parkway Project, RMV would turn over construction of the Las Patrones Parkway Project to the County of Orange. However, according to the same OCDPW’s website, whether the Las Patrones Parkway would ultimately operate as a free arterial or as a tolled component of the SR-241 toll road system is the subject of ongoing discussions related to numerous South County Mobility Improvement ideas, which would require additional steps, including environmental evaluations, prior to implementation. In addition I do not support the 241 extension extended even one more inch.
If the County turns this road over TCA, it would be facilitating TCA’s completion of the SR-241 extension project, without undergoing the proper analysis required under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The Addendum to FEIR 584 and FEIR 589 approved by the County in March 2015 for the “F” Street/ Las Patrones Parkway did not disclose or analyze impacts associated with transfer of Las Patrones Parkway to TCA and never disclosed that Las Patrones Parkway would someday be part of the larger SR-241 Extension Project.
I am requesting that the County of Orange postpone its consideration for the transfer of Las Patrones Parkway to TCA until TCA has:

Completed the current Mobility Study after the 5 widening project and La Pata expansion is complete.

Conducted meaningful and proper public involvement in accordance with applicable federal and state laws. TCA violated our First Amendment (Right to Freedom of Speech) and Fourth Amendment (Illegal Search and Seizure) rights during the June 5, 2017 public forum by searching our personal items and purses and removing any questions we had written, bumper stickers, or small items related that were not provided by TCA. TCA's videographer required participants that wanted to leave video testimony/comments to sign a statement saying that TCA had the legal right to edit their comments in any way they deemed necessary for their purposes. A public agency cannot legally modify public comments received for the project record.
Provided a project purpose and need supported by recent traffic studies, job and population growth projections that have been reviewed and approved by the County, local affected jurisdictions in the cities of San Juan, San Clemente, Mission Viejo, Rancho Mission Viejo, and the public.
Identified a route for the entire SR-241 extension project from its current terminus at Oso Parkway to the San Diego/Orange County border.
Analyzed the environmental impacts of the SR-241 extension project as a whole (current terminus at Oso Parkway to the San Diego/Orange County border) in an Environmental Impact Report (EIR), as required by CEQA and an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), as required by NEPA.

There is no question that the ultimate extension of the SR-241 will be a reasonably foreseeable consequence if the transfer of Las Patrones Parkway to TCA is approved. If the transfer happens, the impacts of the remainder of the SR-241 Extension will become virtually inevitable. Those impacts are far greater than those of Las Patrones Parkway. Nor is it coincidental that the County and Rancho Mission Viejo have intentionally designed the Las Patrones Parkway to minimize the scope of regulatory and environmental review similar to when TCA had previously tried to piecemeal the environmental review of the 241 Extension by moving forward with the first phase of the project (Tesoro Extension) without analyzing the impacts of the entire project or even identifying the proposed route of the SR-241 extension. In June 2013, the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board denied TCA’s application for a Waste Discharge Permit per the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act. The proposed Tesoro Extension alignment is very similar to the design and alignment of the Las Patrones Parkway Project. Because this kind of piecemealing of environmental review is forbidden under CEQA and NEPA, the County of Orange should likewise refrain from action on the transfer of Las Patrones Parkway until an EIR/EIS for the entire SR-241 Extension is complete. Like NEPA, CEQA prohibits the segmentation of a project to avoid environmental review. If anything, CEQA imposes even more stringent protections against piecemealing. CEQA requires agencies to analyze impacts of any future development that is "a reasonably foreseeable consequence" of a Project and "will likely change the scope or nature of the initial project or its environmental effects." (Laurel Heights Improvement Assn. v. Regents of University of California (1988) 47 Ca1.3d 376, 396.)

Currently TCA is studying 20 ideas proposed under a South County Mobility Improvement Study. Some of these ideas include arterial improvements, rail improvements, mobility hubs and other non-toll road alternatives. At this stage, TCA has told the public at its Public Forum held on June 5th that it is studying these 19 ideas and has not yet selected a project alternative, has not yet developed a project purpose and need, nor have they developed traffic studies to support or justify a project purpose or need. As of now, TCA claims that the location of the final segment of the SR-241 toll road and the resulting environmental impacts are completely unknown, but if Las Patrones Parkway is transferred to TCA it would seem logical that TCA would move forward with Mobility Ideas/Alignments 13, 14, or 17 which have a direct connection to Las Patrones Parkway. These alignments would result in eminent domain of residences, businesses, parks, schools, protected open space in the cities of San Juan and San Clemente. These alternatives would result in unacceptable adverse, social, economic, or environmental impacts and would result in serious community disruption. Impacts would be permanent, irreversible, and, for the most part, immitigable.

Las Patrones Parkway should remain as free arterial road, as it was originally approved by the County of Orange. The residences of Rancho Mission Viejo, Ladera Ranch, San Juan and Talega were all led to believe that this road would be a free road. Since the June 5th public forum, when it was disclosed by TCA that they had plans to acquire the road, we have heard that many buyers in Rancho Mission Viejo are choosing to withdraw their deposits on new homes. They do not want a road that they would have to rely upon on a daily basis to be turned into a toll road. In addition, their development impact fees are being used to fund the roadway construction. Why would they want to pay to fund and construct a road and then have to pay to use it?
>> Please also consider the traffic impacts on Antonio Parkway since many people will chose to avoid the toll on Las Patrones Parkway and will elect to use Antonia Parkway as an alternative route. If TCA and the County are sincerely interested in solving South County’s mobility problems, why would you convert a free road to a toll road that a majority of the population will not be able to afford to use or chose to use? This just does not make any sense. The toll road would only benefit those people traveling from North Orange County and the Inland Empire seeking to save a few minutes on their commutes to the beach or their weekend outings to San Diego. Many of these commuters aren't driving to San Diego to work, they are driving to employments centers in Irvine, Newport Beach, Anaheim, Orange, Lake Forest, and Costa Mesa. The toll road would not benefit the residences of Rancho Mission Viejo who are funding the roadway or the residences of San Juan or San Clemente that could potentially lose their homes, businesses, schools, and protected open space. Please keep this road as a free County road as it was originally designed and approved by the County and RMV.

Sincerely,

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Also Please sign this petition to Keep Los Patrones Parkway a Free Arterial Road

https://www.change.org/p/rancho-mission-viejo-corporation-keep-los-patrones-parkway-free-don-t-build-a-tollway-next-to-tesoro-high