Letters to the Editor

Cal Poly fails to act

Regarding: “Cal Poly mulls new hotel, event center,” (Aug. 8):

Has Cal Poly mulled the impacts of mile-long oil tanker trains traveling 24/7 through the campus 1.5 times per day? These trains will be coming down the Cuesta Grade, heading to the Phillips refinery in Nipomo. San Luis Obispo County views this as a localized NIMBY issue for Nipomo. I would expand the NIMBY area to all of SLO and, in fact, California. The trains will be coming from North Dakota, over Donner Summit, through downtown Sacramento and San Jose into Nipomo.

Berkeley and Davis have already taken positions against the trains. Where is Cal Poly? The oil tanker train explosion in Canada last year incinerated 47 people and wiped out half a downtown similar to SLO’s. Unlike the rest of urban California, SLO has singletrack mainline, which means a mile-long oil train or a 700 passenger Amtrak train must pull over on a siding to let the other pass. Possibilities of a horrific event on a foggy night are huge. I hope Cal Poly uses it “Learn by Doing” slogan and has faculty/students/residents join me on the picket line this fall at the SLO County Government Center to defeat this proposal.

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