There is a recent proposal to place a 660,000 square foot Distribution Center immediately across the street from Sun Lakes and next to a care facility that tends to the needs of medically compromised senior citizens.

This will drastically increase truck traffic on Highland Springs Road! The estimates are an average of one truck every five minutes 24 hours per day, but at peak times it may mean ten or more trucks at one time!

If you have currently traveled on Highland Springs you know adding a number of big rig trucks maneuvering among automobile traffic will severely complicate the lives of anyone desiring access to any of the shopping areas or medical facilities at this end of our city.

Then imagine problems with emergency traffic, police, fire and ambulances, trying to get through this mess in sometimes life threatening situations!

Contrast this with current city plans to confront three existing major traffic bottlenecks; first, dealing with present congestion on Highland Springs; second, extending Sun Lakes Blvd to Sunset; and third plans to upgrade Pennsylvania in Beaumont to increase accessibility.

Here's the bottom line to all of this: Timing — it will only take approximately two years to build and start operating the distribution center and releasing all that truck traffic, but the modifications to area streets to improve traffic flow is perhaps five or more years away.

Where is the logic in approving the construction of the Distribution Center years ahead of providing the highway infrastructure to support the increase in truck traffic?

There is no rush to complete this distribution center, the proposers have already stated that they currently have no clients to occupy this facility; they will build it and then search for a client to occupy it.

Given all of this, why would the Banning Planning Commission consider approving this proposal at this time with the full knowledge that the supportive highway modifications will not be completed for several years after the center is operational and there is currently no client waiting to occupy it?

Clearly, they have the cart firmly ahead of the horse!

A rational, logical and intelligent planning conclusion is as follows:

1. It is abundantly clear that at the present moment the city of Banning lacks the traffic infrastructure to support this project.

2. As a consequence, the Planning Commission must delay approval of this project until such time as the three street modification is completed. These upgrades to streets will permit improved traffic flow for truck traffic and provide residential areas at this end of the City improved access to shopping or medical facilities in this area.

3. As a condition of approval, all truck traffic must be restricted to Highland Springs only.

Clearly, the Banning Planning Commission and City Council must realize that logic must dictate this approval process, and delay consideration of this project until such time as there is supportive infrastructure to accommodate the increased traffic load.

Lyndon Taylor, Banning

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