The County and City of San Clemente evaluated alternative alignments for the La Pata Avenue gap closure, including locations near the Talega and Forster Ranch developments. In-depth community input led to the development of the La Pata Avenue/Camino Del Rio Extension Project, which will traverse parts of San Clemente and the unincorporated areas of the County. The project will close the gap between the two roadway segments – providing an essential link in the local roadway network.
The initial step in the environmental process began in November 2009 with the release of the Notice of Preparation for the Environmental Impact Report. A public scoping meeting was conducted on December 2, 2009 in San Clemente to provide project information and garner input from interested parties. A public meeting on the Draft Environmental Impact Report was conducted November 18th, 2010 in San Clemente to provide interested parties an opportunity to review and provide comments on the project documents. Public outreach efforts included mailing project information to residents and businesses within a quarter mile of the project and to key stakeholders and interested parties. The County's project website was launched and city websites included project information for residents. Press releases were issued to regional and local media. Based on input from the public meetings, the project was refined in the Final Environmental Impact Report (Final EIR) to address comments received during the Draft Environmental Impact Report phase.
In May of 2011, the County of Orange approved a Project Report and Final Environmental Impact Report (Final EIR) for the project that would extend and widen the existing 1.8-mile portion of La Pata Avenue, south of Ortega Highway, roughly two miles to connect with Avenida La Pata in San Clemente at Calle Saluda.
The La Pata Avenue/Camino Del Rio Extension Project is designed to ease traffic congestion while ensuring minimal environmental impact on the area's high quality of life. Particular attention in the study is placed on minimizing adverse visual, noise, air quality, light and glare impacts on the communities. The improvements are consistent with the City of San Clemente and County General Plans and the Talega and Forster Ranch Specific Plans.
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