The Mission Heritage Trail Association (MHTA) would like to correct several errors contained in the news article entitled “Major Plans for Bohnett Park, Mission Creek Bridge.”
• Don Olson (not Olsen), former president of MHTA/Safe Passage was not present at the hearing. It was current president Tom Jacobs, a local architect and former chair of the Mission Canyon architectural review committee who spoke to the commission.
• At no time did Fred Sweeney or any other member of the MHTA board indicate support for a widening of the bridge.
• MHTA has always been supportive of preserving all the cultural and natural attributes of the Mission Canyon/Los Olivos corridor. In fact, MHTA would much rather preserve the existing bridge with any required structural enhancements as necessary to ensure it will last another 100 years. We would rather see separate pedestrian bridge(s) as necessary to allow for a safe and ADA compliant walking area in this area of the corridor.
• It should be noted that the city’s Public Works Department has already been given the authority to engage in contracts with consultants, and that work has just commenced. There is no basis for the assertion that a safety improvement project will cost between $10 million and $20 million dollars, since no formal studies have yet been done, nor plans developed.
• As an organization dedicated to assuring the safe passage of all who enjoy and use the canyon and the treasures that make this area of our community special, MHTA looks forward to participating in a robust community dialog based on actual facts, studies, and accurate information. Contrary to attempts by certain individuals, dissemination of scary misinformation will not assist in preserving Mission Canyon. Only careful, sensitive planning based on actual information can accomplish that goal.