The Navy Broadway Complex is the prime waterfront property at the foot of Broadway on Harbor Drive that should be developed as an enduring symbol of San Diego with an emphasis on useable public spaces. Instead, it is destined for dull mediocrity if current plans come to fruition.

It used to belong to the San Diego public who lent it to the Navy in a patriotic gesture for wartime use. Decades later, in return for building a free new Navy headquarters, the Navy wants to lease most of the property long-term to Doug Manchester for private profit in a secret deal.

Whatever you may think about Manchester, the mayor’s staff or the Centre City Development Corp. (CCDC) – all of whom are complicit in this tragedy – it is the Navy that is the major villain of this piece. The Navy has done its best to stifle public input into the redevelopment of Navy Broadway Complex, acting like a rapacious landlord and hiding behind smoke and mirrors and half-truths.

The latest example of the Navy’s lack of concern for San Diego is a supposed environmental document they call an Environmental Assessment finished in June, 2006 but kept away from the public until this week. View it here:

I understand why they did this because its almost 500-page bulk does not disguise that it is a cut-and-paste document full of errors produced only for the Navy to attempt to side-step Federal and State environmental laws.

I hope enough San Diego residents raise their voices in opposition saying we can do better and the Navy should respect the law.

This whole deal is being orchestrated out of Washington and it is time for San Diego’s Congress members to rein in the Secretary of the Navy.


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