Monday, Feb. 5, 2007 | The waterfront plan put forward by Steve Peace and Ron Roberts looks very interesting and deserves dialogue. I am a native as is my wife. I was born in 1945. We have seen a lot of changes in our city/ county since then.

As a boy I lived in Pacific Beach. To get to the city you had to drive past the Mission Bay slough and the Cudahy meat packing plant. Each time we had to hold our breath because of the terrible smells. All the waste drained into the bay. Now we have a beautiful Mission Bay. Each time I drive down the 5, I am awestruck by the park’s beauty. That did not happen by accident, visionaries got together and had a dream. Somebody had a dream about the Zoo, Balboa Park, Shelter and Harbor Islands. The Convention Center and Seaport Village were created from tuna packing plants and old shipyards, somebody had a dream. Mission Trails Park was spearheaded by Larry Sterling and Dick Murphy; they helped to create an open space jewel.

Horton plaza was the dream of Pete Wilson, Ernie Hahn and others. They wanted a new downtown, instead of the bars and tattoo parlors. We keep hearing about how we need a new airport, I will never see a plane land or takeoff from anywhere but Lindbergh. We need to make it work for at least the next 20 years. It needs to be made to work. Others have proposed changing the location of the terminals, traffic and services back to the PCH side of the airport. That would give us an opportunity for a great entrance to an airport and a great front porch to our city. We need a “real” plan for all the harbor front. Developers look at a project and build what will sell and make money for their investors (nothing wrong with that) but the big bay needs big dreams. The Port Authority should be looking at the whole bay and plan for a “Bay of the Future” not just one development at a time.

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