A Brief History
The idea to improve the tollbooth plaza surfaced several years ago and a conceptual design was prepared in 2012. At that time, the project goals were to calm traffic, beautify the entrance to Coronado, maintain and improve Caltrans and CHP operations, and design to a budget of $840,000. The 2012 conceptual plan included maintaining/improving existing operations, a roadway paving pattern to give the perception of narrowed travel lanes to reduce speeds, and a landscape plan. The “Wing” structure was to be maintained for various reasons, including uncertainty of whether toll operations were needed in the future, historic preservation, cost of removal, and the inherent traffic calming effect.
The response to the concept was that while it achieved the project goals and budget, the City felt that a grander design was necessary and wanted to involve the community to understand what they want to see happen at the plaza. In 2014, the City contracted RBF Consulting, a company of Michael Baker International, to work with City staff and the Coronado community in developing a vision for the gateway.
The Coronado Real Estate Association held a design competition last year titled "The New Village Entry", with winners in the student, amateur, and professional categories. Plenty of creative ideas, the professional winner designed an observation bridge/platform over the existing wing. Photos of the submissions can be viewed here.