Planning Commission Shelves Caltrans Traffic Signal: ‘Only Local Maids’ Use Bus Stops And Need To Cross PCH In Midtown Malibu, One Says

Written by on February 21, 2024

The Malibu Planning Commission Tuesday night shelved a Caltrans effort to convert a flashing yellow light at a crosswalk in midtown Malibu .. to a traffic signal.

The commissioners said the state had failed to show that the crosswalk is even necessary, and suggested that the crosswalk be removed to reduce the danger of cars hitting other vehicles in rear-end collisions. 

Bius stops are on either side of the street. and a beach access way threads between houses, providing public access to Billionaire’s Beach, just 150 feet away.

Planning Commissioner John Mazza Tuesday said just because there is a bus stop there … does not mean a crosswalk needs to be there for Malibu residents in the first place.


“We don’t know how many people use the bus stop, because nobody lives there.

“The only people that I can contemplate using the bus stop, are the local maids.

“Now there are bus stops all along the highway – all along the highway – that do not have crosswalks.”

The Planning Commission decision to request more data flies in the face of recent public demands for slower traffic, more pedestrian safety, and other improvements on Pacific Coast Highway, demands that intensified after four Pepperdine students were milled on a sidewalk-less stretch of PCH, less than a mile away.

One planning commissioner, John Mazza, asked they the crosswalk in question was placed “in front of a liquor store.” He asked why there was a crosswalk on PCH there, and not at other locations like in front of Moonshadows restaurant.

Other commissioners suggested that pedestrians walk about 1,200 feet west to the traffic signal at Nobu, or about the same distance east to the crosswalk at Nicholas Eatery, to cross the PCH.  About 40,500 vehicles per day pass each day..

Caltrans … for its part … failed to provide a traffic safety engineer to the meeting last night.   No one presented any crash data, or explained the need for the red light.

The two Caltrans representatives on the Zoom call both said they were unable to provide any safety data about the need for the signal.

The action comes despite a warning from City Planning Director Richard Mollica that the traffic signal was needed to provide proper spacing … sequencing and timing for the new traffic signal synchronization project along PCH.

But the city’s traffic engineers were not at the meeting … either. 

Planning Commissioner John Mazza says he sees no reason for pedestrians to cross the highway in the middle of town.


“I am getting the impression that this was planned because there is a crosswalk there and we’re putting in synchronize lights, so let’s throw a light in there just in case we need it. 

“And that to me doesn’t make sense because we don’t need a crosswalk. So why don’t we just throw a light anywhere. There’s no reason to cross there.”

Commissioners asked if there were bus stops there … and was told that there are.

Commissimers  asked if there is a beach access way there.

There is … just a few houses away … 

City planning director Richard Mollica said this particular signal is needed for the signal synchronization system that the city is installing.

But Commissioners Kraig Hill and Skylar Peak also questioned the need for the crosswalk:


KRAIG HILL: “we don’t feel like we have a clear justification for anything at this site yet…”

SKYLAR PEAK:  “If the crosswalk is warranted in that area, it needs to be a crosswalk that has a red yellow green light, tied into the synchronization. Absolutely. I think we’re all in agreement on that …”

“But before we even get to that point, we have the issue of whether or not that crosswalk should remain there, whether or not it gets used or not. And until I get an answer for that, or a more substantial answer, I’m not really comfortable with saying let’s do it. ”



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