On Long-term Leases, San Diego Figures it Out on the Fly
The City Council's consideration of a new lease for Belmont Park underscores a strange truth when it comes to city property: There isn't any common understanding of what makes a good deal, and deals are rarely reached with any long-term vision in mind.
Andrew Keatts | September 29, 2014 |
Sometimes Quick and Dirty Urban Upgrades Are the Best Urban Upgrades
The mastermind of "tactical urbanism" – think cheap, temporary improvements like painting over a parking lot to create a cool plaza – says sometimes the best way to improve a city is by making tangible and incremental upgrades, not thinking 30 years into the future.
Andrew Keatts | September 18, 2014 |
Faulconer Makes the First Snip to the Red Tape Menace
A new city plan will cut anywhere from two weeks to a month in the time it takes a project to get approved. It's the first piece of the proverbial red tape Mayor Kevin Faulconer promised to cut, to get homes and offices built faster.
Andrew Keatts | September 17, 2014 |
Carmel Valley Takes the Goldilocks Approach to One Paseo
Worried they'd be written off as NIMBYs if they rejected the development project outright, planning group members OK'd their own "just right" version of it – and it's much smaller than what Kilroy Realty has in mind.
Andrew Keatts | September 12, 2014 |
Where One Paseo Stands on the Smart-Growth Checklist
The city wants to steer growth toward dense developments near public transit. It isn't clear whether One Paseo — a 23-acre, $650 million project in Carmel Valley — really counts as a win toward that end.
Andrew Keatts | September 8, 2014 |
This Little-Used Parking Lot Is the Epicenter of a Yearlong Political Power Struggle
Family Health Centers of San Diego wants the city to sell it a little-used parking lot so it can expand. The only thing standing in its way is a slow-moving bureaucracy and a community stalwart with no legal claim to the lot.
Mario Koran & Andrew Keatts | August 28, 2014 |
Reducing Red Tape – at the Expense of Residents
A slew of recently approved "mixed use" projects totally ignore a requirement for commercial projects to have off-street parking. These new gated communities have minor commercial space and little to no parking, abusing the intent of the city's land use code, if not the letter of the law.
David Little | August 4, 2014 |
The Blip on the New Civic San Diego Head’s Affordable Housing Record
The new head of Civic San Diego, Reese Jarrett, will be tasked with driving development in southeastern San Diego to boost affordable housing availability. When Jarrett was a developer in the area, his company and Civic San Diego's predecessor failed to follow restrictions meant to do just that.
Andrew Keatts | July 29, 2014 |
San Diego’s Next Density Fight
City planners are eyeing changes to Grantville: They want to take the industrial area and turn it into one with lots of apartments and retail storefronts, an urban village based around the neighborhood's trolley stop. But if history's any guide, that'll be easier said than done.
Andrew Keatts | July 23, 2014 |
Conflict Pushes Fulton Out of Bay Park Decision
The city is selecting a consultant to rewrite development restrictions around two new trolley stops. Planning director Bill Fulton removed himself from the decision due to a conflict of interest under the city's ethics ordinance.
Andrew Keatts | July 17, 2014 |
MTS Almost Got Off Easy on the Desert Line
A company under increasing scrutiny nearly made life easy on county transportation officials this month, when a missed lease payment almost negated its contract to rebuild a cross-border freight line. Now, if public officials want to undo the deal, they'll have to work for it.
Ari Bloomekatz & Andrew Keatts | July 16, 2014 |
Behind the ‘Ugly Baby’ Compromise That Resurrected the Housing Fee
Andrew Keatts | July 11, 2014 |
Blunting Climate Change in Our Neck of the Woods
If we hope to mitigate the worst impacts of climate change, we must start locally. The Board of Supervisors can do just that by showing residents it understands its responsibility to protect what remains of the Cleveland National Forest.
Michael Soulé | June 23, 2014 |
Inside the Sports Arena’s Fight to Maintain Center Stage
The Chargers are eyeing the land under his feet, and Viejas Arena is luring away the talent. We talked with Ernie Hahn, general manager at Valley View Casino Center, about the future of San Diego's sports arena.
Catherine Green | June 16, 2014 |
What the Recession Did to Downtown Development
Civic San Diego fielded applications for just nine new projects in 2008, while developers withdrew their request for five others. In 2009 and 2010, while the economy tried to find its footing, downtown activity almost disappeared.