The planned expansion of Interstate-5 in San Diego County would finally complete the Southern California metropolis. Los Angeles and Orange Counties became wall-to-wall sprawl development decades ago, erasing all traces of their rural heritage and the scenic outdoors. Northern San Diego County, with its quaint beach towns, is tenuously holding on to the last vestiges of agricultural land and breathable open space. But these areas too are rapidly developing. It is no surprise then that I-5, the only north-south route along the coast, is increasingly traffic clogged. The county’s solution? Invest $1.4 billion to expand the freeway from 8 lanes to 12 or 14 lanes along a 26-mile stretch of the north county coast.
In spring 2007, the Texas Transportation Institute and its partners will release the newest version of the "Mobility Report." This eagerly-awaited document will chronicle the worsening congestion in urban and suburban America. The report typically spawns a frenzy of media stories as folks eagerly peruse the ranking lists finding out just how their area did. While methodology tweaks and data issues might add a few wrinkles, no one will be surprised to see congestion worse than the prior report two years ago. Surprise, surprise!