San Miguel Reflections

A lot is happening in San Miguel these days. Last year the county received a grant to redesign the park on K Street. They had community meetings, polled residents and devised the plan which has been in progress for nearly a year. A majority of respondents agreed to close the section of K Street that has always bisected the park and create a new central soccer field. On the west side, the existing barbeque pit and picnic area, the pool and the playground are still in place but the horseshoe pits were taken out. A new walking trail circumnavigates the entire park. The project should essentially be complete by August although grassy areas will be off limits for another three months.
The Lions Club’s annual Old Timers Picnic will take place in the picnic area on Sunday, Aug. 27 from noon to 3 p.m. honoring Pioneer Day Royalty and descendents of pioneer families of the area. Dinners are served free to those 80 years old and older.
Downtown, the flower beds have recently been freshened due to the efforts of the Chamber of Commerce.
On the corner of east 12th and N Streets, one of San Miguel’s historic old homes, was beautifully restored into an apartment building and painted an eye-catching red with white trim.
On the east side of 11th Street the first phase of a large Peoples Self-Help housing project is being built. Over a dozen new homes are in various stages of progress. The second stage will be in the lower field near the river on the same property where the land is currently being prepared. The population will certainly spike when all the homes are filled.
On K Street, on the mesa near the four-way Highway 101 intersection, a large new Dollar General Store – the first in San Luis Obispo County – has been built and is well into entering the completion phase. According to Laura Somerville of Corporate Communications, they carry a wide array of both name-brand and private-brand merchandise.  Depending on how work progresses, it is expected to open by mid to late October, but it could be sooner.
Meanwhile, this past spring, CalTrans began a large inclusive project that is impacting access to the highway from town and also highway traffic passing through the whole area. When completed in two years, the southbound onramp from Mission Street near the Rios-Caledonia Adobe will pass under both sides of the highway and access 101 in the right lane.
The bridges at San Marcos Road have been redesigned and are currently being replaced, starting with the southbound side. Traffic is detoured to the opposite lanes. Work is being done on the 10th Street overpass to align the approach to the new bridges, resulting in periodic one-way flagged traffic and at the same time on the south Mission Street onramp which is often closed. Driving south from here can be a challenge at times – some of us take the slower but nice drive to Paso Robles on North River Road.
San Miguel is growing and you are invited to visit. Excellent food is served at Dos Hermanos and Leo’s (American food) restaurants at 10th and K Streets and Taco Mafia on West 14th Street downtown. The San Miguel Mercantile has an eclectic assortment of merchandise including antiques and a new garden shop. The Mission Gift Shop is open daily and the Gift Shop at the Rios-Caledonia Adobe is open Friday-Sunday.