Takeaways from April 14 Greater Golden Hill Planning Committee (GGHPC) Meeting
Golf Course Drive Improvements
— Some Board members were surprised to learn that the City’s idea of a “protected bike lane” is a curb separating bikes and cars. “A curb is dangerous,” said one. “A bicyclist who has to move because something’s in the way will hit the curb and wind up on the ground.” A community member responded that curbs, which were in the community’s original request, provide adequate protection and cautioned, “We ask for what we want, but then it’s never good enough, so we ask for something impossible. That’s exactly how you don’t get a seat at the table.”
— The Board was mystified about why the City insists that a project that is 60 percent completed will take another two years to finish.
Status of Community Planning Groups (CPGs)
A Board member reported on a conversation she had with City Attorney Mara Elliot: “She is saying that our groups are not an arm of the City, we’re just volunteers, so we can’t be held to the Brown Act. If the City tried to hold us to the Brown Act, they would have to elevate us to some quasi-City status, and they would have to pick up liability for our activities.”
She summarized three options that City Councilmember Joe LaCava, who is working to resolve this, has identified:
— Planning groups would become a part of the City.
— Planning groups would essentially be “just a lot of hot air blowing in the wind.”
— The City would formally take on liability for planning groups.
Takeaways from April 20 North Park Planning Committee (NPPC) Meeting
Yet Another Map Waiver Request
A discussion of a map waiver request for a project at 4473 30th Street with 35 residential units and 4 commercial spaces generated a few noteworthy points and exchanges.
It’s What the City Wants:
Questions for City Hall:
— Why instruct developers to apply for permits to build something they aren’t going to build?
— How many developers who apply to build apartments actually build apartments?
Parking Is Important:Asked why his project along a transit corridor will include on-site parking, Saberi said, “We’re putting ourselves in the shoes of the homeowner who may have to drive to work, then when they get home, they have to circle the block looking for parking. Parking is important. If we were in Manhattan, you’d have buses and subways. San Diego is still a long way from that. What happens if you buy a condo in North Park and you work in Rancho Bernardo? What kind of public transportation are you going to take to Rancho Bernardo?”
Just Browsing:Minutes after Saberi reported that his condos would likely sell in the high $600,000s, he found a prospective buyer. “I’m actually looking at pricing of housing in North Park now,” said a Board member. “A lot of two-bedrooms, two-baths that I’m finding are between $850,000 and $1 million. If you could provide housing that’s in the high $600,000s, I might actually have a future here.” Saberi later demurred that his price points are in flux.
2021 Election Challenges:
The 19 formal challenges to the March NPPC election that filled all 15 Board seats will not produce any change in the results. But in more than 7 hours of discussion in a special April 15 meeting and the April 20 Board meeting, two points of consensus emerged.
— Giving two people complete responsibility for an
unprecedented two-year election during a COVID shutdown set the stage for mistakes in areas like determining voter eligibility, guaranteeing voter access, handling ballots, and following NPPC bylaws.
— Both sides in the divide between YIMBYs and non-YIMBYs have a stake in trying to find areas of consensus. YIMBY Board members will need the community’s support and should respect community input. Non-YIMBYs should become more involved by attending subcommittee meetings.
Mark Your Calendar: NPPC Subcommittee Meeting Dates
To increase community involvement in all NPPC deliberations, SoNo will publicize upcoming subcommittee dates.
Urban Design-Project Review (UDPR) Subcommittee
will meet via Zoom on Monday, May 3, at 6:00 pm. The link to register for UDRP meetings is: