The current segments under study by the RTC.
(Via Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission)
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Morning Lookout: Millions for rail trail, Pleasure Point compromise & paycheck vs. planet

Good morning! It’s Thursday, Dec. 8, and rain is forecast to return later in the day after a partly sunny start around Santa Cruz County, with temperatures cresting in the 50s.

There’s plenty to explore around Lookout, so if you’d rather fly solo, right this way.
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The Coastal Rail Trail got an enormous boost Wednesday, Max Chun reports, with news of $115 million in state grants to fund segments that will stretch from the Santa Cruz municipal wharf to the Seacliff neighborhood of Aptos, among other projects.

That trail will eventually run through Pleasure Point, where compromise carried the day this week as one neighborhood group worked with 1st District Supervisor Manu Koenig on a deal that will essentially limit how high new buildings could climb vertically along Portola Drive. Mark Conley has the details on that.

And in our Community Voices opinion section, Stanford grad and MBA candidate Marisa Messina writes that she’s found her passion in pursuing environmental justice, but worries that not everyone will be able to take a huge pay cut to help save the planet.

Let’s hit the headlines, shall we?

With $115 million in state funding secured, 7 miles of Coastal Rail Trail to break ground in 2025

A Santa Cruz local enjoys his ride down the new trail rail path.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

A big $115 million grant from the California Transportation Commission’s Active Transportation Program covers the funding gap for nearly 7 miles of the Coastal Rail Trail across Santa Cruz County. Construction can begin as soon as 2025. Here’s more from Max Chun.

LAST WEEK: To jump-start light rail future, Santa Cruz County commission readies to spend millions (Lookout)

Pleasure Point sustains: Neighborhood group celebrates compromises made for Portola Drive’s future growth

The view over Portola Drive and the neighborhood of Pleasure Point.
(Kevin Painchaud / Lookout Santa Cruz)

Though they’re “not gloating,” Save Pleasure Point made enough sensical noise to 1st District Santa Cruz County Supervisor Manu Koenig, who helped make the group’s case to the planning department and other supervisors to limit development density on large parcels along the neighborhood’s main commercial artery. Mark Conley has details.

PREVIOUSLY: As Pleasure Point braces for change, its development issues resonate all over Santa Cruz County (Lookout)


Lots to get your Thursday off on the right foot — and we’ve got more up our sleeve here at Lookout. One of those things is Wallace Baine’s Weekender, a recommendation-filled jaunt through Santa Cruz County’s arts and culture scene, which you can get, along with our other newsletters plus breaking news alerts, by signing up here. Please do also follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram if you’re looking to stay current.

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Now go enjoy your Thursday!

Will McCahill
Lookout Santa Cruz