Letter to the Editor

Glossing over problem

Paso RoblesMay 6, 2013 

Caltrans District 5 director Tim Gubbins’ viewpoint (May 1) is disingenuous rationalizing for a $2 million Caltrans error in selecting the most cost-efficient means to extend pavement life.

Ignoring damage to autos from the larger-thannormal rocks used to chip seal, he admits to only “a number of bicyclists very dissatisfied with the rougher pavement surface .”

Can he really claim there are any bicyclists who are not very dissatisfied?

Gubbins’ positive spin by promising extensive “testing” of how to best correct this situation conveniently ignores what local bicycle clubs and probably the UC Davis Pavement Research Center could have told him before the work was done: Using larger rocks significantly adds to the challenge of bike riders with their narrow tires riding near the edge of pavement. It comes as no surprise that he includes “smaller rock” as one possible alternative to be tested!

Gubbins should accept responsibility for the costly failure to resurface the road in a way “well thought out, that serves the taxpayers who rightfully expect us to be prudent and satisfies all the travelers on this popular, scenic coastal highway.”

Promising such a future resolution begs the question why it wasn’t done right in the first place, and glosses over the danger and disincentive to cyclists and motorists in the meantime.

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