A sign prohibiting trucks over 5 tons displayed near the corner of Main Street and 26th Street in Barrio Logan on March 29, 2022. / Photo by Kristian Carreon for Voice of San Diego

When one discusses the future of San Diego, there’s typically a shared, unspoken assumption: We’ll keep growing.

Everything we need to power a prospering region hinges on that assumption, too. Infrastructure, housing, the airport, drive-thru Starbucks coffee shops.

But the reality is we’re not growing. We haven’t been growing for years. We are, in fact, shrinking.

New data featured in Scott Lewis and Andrew Keatts’ recent story showed the region has been losing population for the last three years. Also in that story — and explained in the final segment of this week’s podcast — is a forecast from the California Department of Finance that shows our downward trend will continue for many years to come.

Should we accept the reality that San Diego is dwindling (“dying” if you wanna get dramatic about it), we have big questions to face about who we are, what policies and initiatives serve us best and whether there’s any way to steer us toward prosperity.

On the show, hosts Lewis and Keatts hash out these harsh realities and big questions with co-host Andrea Lopez-Villafaña.

A Truckload of Problems

For years Barrio Logan residents and environmental justice advocates have pressed police to keep big trucks off their small streets.

Cargo trucks take up space and emit tons of fumes that worsen the already poor air quality of the neighborhood.

Lopez-Villafaña has been covering this story — and on the podcast she shares the latest about what police are doing, what they’re not doing, and how the neighborhood is grappling amongst itself to decide how to keep their homes safe from truck exhaust and over-policing.

We Love a Special Election

Also on the pod, we recap this week’s special election to replace Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez in Assembly District 80.

Former San Diego City Councilmembers and (also former) political allies Georgette Gómez and David Alvarez both advanced to the next election — and then another one after that — to represent the SoCal district. And things have gotten hairy. There’s a lot to unspool there. So let’s get to it.

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Nate John is the digital manager at Voice of San Diego. He oversees Voice's website, newsletters, podcasts and product team. You can reach him at nate@vosd.org.

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1 Comment

  1. I’m using this episode for my Sociology of Family courses. I especially loved how you highlighted the “housing” versus “homelessness” survey responses. There’s a concept called “structural violence” that refers to how social problems like homelessness are symptoms of structures that disproportionately affect specific groups of people.

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