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Atascadero seeks public's feedback to improve Hwy. 41 corridor

Traffic flows at dusk on Highway 41 in Atascadero in this 30-second exposure looking west near Atascadero Lake Park and the Charles Paddock Zoo.
Traffic flows at dusk on Highway 41 in Atascadero in this 30-second exposure looking west near Atascadero Lake Park and the Charles Paddock Zoo. dmiddlecamp@thetribunenews.com

The city of Atascadero is spearheading a community feedback effort to improve a popular highway in town for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians as part of the multiagency Highway 41 Corridor Improvement Study.

The corridor being reviewed covers the west-side portion of Highway 41 that runs from El Camino Real to San Gabriel Road.

"This section of Highway 41 is an important link to main attractions in our city, including the Charles Paddock Zoo, (Faces of Freedom) Veterans Memorial and Atascadero Lake Park, as well as a gateway for those traveling to and from the coast,” city Public Works Director Nick DeBar said. “The corridor has a variety of mixed uses, and this study will determine the facilities needed to blend the unique needs of vehicular traffic, pedestrians, bicyclists, tourism, parking and business access.”

Caltrans is planning disabled-access improvements for the corridor in the next few years, so the city took the lead on the public outreach efforts to help shape that plan.

The Highway 41 Corridor Improvement Study costs $200,000 and is being funded by the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments. That agency, Caltrans and the city of Atascadero are collaborating on the project.

“Although Caltrans has jurisdiction over the Highway 41 corridor, the city of Atascadero is acting as the lead agency for this study to ensure that all community needs, not only vehicular traffic, are considered and evaluated,” DeBar said.

Several city workshops are planned through the fall where the public is invited to learn about the study, identify how the corridor is used, help develop a future vision for it and document any concerns.

Residents and visitors are invited to attend the first community workshop from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Atascadero Lake Pavilion, 9315 Pismo Ave.

The session will include a formal presentation of project information gathered to date, followed by visioning and mapping exercises.

Additional workshops are planned in the summer and fall, according to the Highway 41 Corridor Improvement Study‘s website, www.hwy41atascadero.com.

For more information, contact project coordinator Loreli Cappel at 250-7979 or lcappel@pmcworld.com.

The Highway 41 corridor

Here's a map showing the location of the Highway 41 corridor in Atascadero.

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