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This morning I received a phone call and e-mail about the story I wrote yesterday from Gary London, president of the London Group Realty Advisors, a real estate consulting firm.

The story focused on the bio and tech industries’ defeat of a proposal to convert industrial land to residential in the city of San Diego’s long-term blueprint for growth.

London argued that:

  • The land in question couldn’t be considered industrial land anyways because the area surrounding it is mostly office space. Any threat to public health or safety would be controlled by state or federal regulations, he said.
  • A housing shortage for middle-end wage earners exists in San Diego, and should be addressed through the construction of homes near the areas where people work.
  • Preserving industrial land, part of the city’s guidelines in the general plan, was a “knee-jerk” response to a market condition that can’t be controlled by city bureaucrats: manufacturing is not profitable in San Diego given the costs of production here, and manufacturing industries are now moving elsewhere.
  • The general plan was a subject of heated debate, and ultimately San Diego passed the current version because it did not want to take a position that appeared to counter biotech or high-tech interests.

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