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Thread: San Diego Resources?

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
    Registered
    Jul 2003
    Location
    San Diego, CA
    Posts
    7,061

    San Diego Resources?

    I moved to San Diego a few weeks back. It is incredibly beautiful. There is far more greenery than I typically see in big cities, the air is clean, and traffic is not too bad. The downtown area is surprisingly walkable. I have yet to use public transit, but it appears to have a good public transit system. In short, I am impressed. Clearly, someone has done some things right.

    I am hoping the good folks here can cast some light on what went right. I am interested in previous threads on Cyburbia that you think are good (I did a search, to no avail), online resources, opinions, etc. Also looking for any websites with photos, travel info, and so on. Also wondering if any members here work here in a planning capacity. I just want to learn more about it and better understand this city generally, not just from a planning perspective, though that definitely intrigues me.

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Michele Zone; 21 May 2012 at 6:58 PM.

  2. #2
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Sasebo, Japan
    Posts
    104
    Ahhh...My hometown.

    What went "right" downtown was CCDC (Centre City Development Corporation; now disolved). For nearly 40 years they shaped the development of downtown. The Horton Plaza Renovation/Construction in 1985 (I believe it was $130M), Petco Park (2004), Seaport Village (1980), The Convention Center (1989), were all done under CCDC's tenure.

    CCDC did a very good job of "cleaning" up downtown San Diego. No one can argue with their Economic Development plan's effectiveness. Just visit Gaslamp and night Thursday - Sunday or when there is a Padres's game. Thousands of people flood the streets spending money like there never was a recession. Cranes have dotted the skyline for the past decade and a half. Even when the real estate market crumbled the cranes were still there, although they were noticeably less active.



    During the early 2000s I work in community development programs and CCDC was seen as pure evil in these circles. While they were very good at Economic Development CCDC completely failed (IMO) when it came to providing for the "lesser" class. I can remember having a conversation with a CCDC staffer about their policies and how it would affect people outside of their area of responsibility and I was told, "Any area to the east of the 5 doesn't exist to us." I firmly believe this is how they operated as well. The exception being CCDC took advantage of the need for low income housing throughout the region and would routinely provide housing units outside of their AOR. I'm not sure but I beleive they provided something like 1,000 units in Barrio Logan and City Heights, compared to the 4,000 units they provided within their own community, many in the form of SROs. There's a housing development on Market and 13th that serves as a great example of their affordable housing. Many of their tactics and policies gentrified the area. (Sidenote: Not many people realize that downtown has a historic African American district. Check out http://www.harlemofthewest.com)


    Downtown is extremely walkable. I lived in Bario Logan (just south of Petco) and used to walk from there to Little Italy every Saturday for the best Farmer's Market in all of San Diego. The grid system and wide sidewalks help and make it easy to get around.

    What are some of the questions you have? Like I said that's my hometown and I love it: good and the bad.


    A shot I took one night years ago...now I'm homesick.


    From the ferry pier at Coronado


    Coronado Beach at Sunset


    The Fountain in Balboa Park


    Imperial Beach Pier


    Botanical Garden in Balboa Park



    Last edited by Huck; 25 Jun 2012 at 2:08 AM.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian
    Registered
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    163
    I worked as a planner for 4+ years in San Diego before moving up to LA for grad school. It's still my favorite city in California and I 'd like to think I know it inside and out. Ask away!

  4. #4
    Member
    Registered
    May 2013
    Location
    Long Beach, CA
    Posts
    18
    Quote Originally posted by Huck View post
    Ahhh...My hometown.

    What went "right" downtown was CCDC (Centre City Development Corporation; now disolved). For nearly 40 years they shaped the development of downtown. The Horton Plaza Renovation/Construction in 1985 (I believe it was $130M), Petco Park (2004), Seaport Village (1980), The Convention Center (1989), were all done under CCDC's tenure.

    CCDC did a very good job of "cleaning" up downtown San Diego. No one can argue with their Economic Development plan's effectiveness. Just visit Gaslamp and night Thursday - Sunday or when there is a Padres's game. Thousands of people flood the streets spending money like there never was a recession. Cranes have dotted the skyline for the past decade and a half. Even when the real estate market crumbled the cranes were still there, although they were noticeably less active.



    During the early 2000s I work in community development programs and CCDC was seen as pure evil in these circles. While they were very good at Economic Development CCDC completely failed (IMO) when it came to providing for the "lesser" class. I can remember having a conversation with a CCDC staffer about their policies and how it would affect people outside of their area of responsibility and I was told, "Any area to the east of the 5 doesn't exist to us." I firmly believe this is how they operated as well. The exception being CCDC took advantage of the need for low income housing throughout the region and would routinely provide housing units outside of their AOR. I'm not sure but I beleive they provided something like 1,000 units in Barrio Logan and City Heights, compared to the 4,000 units they provided within their own community, many in the form of SROs. There's a housing development on Market and 13th that serves as a great example of their affordable housing. Many of their tactics and policies gentrified the area. (Sidenote: Not many people realize that downtown has a historic African American district. Check out http://www.harlemofthewest.com)


    Downtown is extremely walkable. I lived in Bario Logan (just south of Petco) and used to walk from there to Little Italy every Saturday for the best Farmer's Market in all of San Diego. The grid system and wide sidewalks help and make it easy to get around.

    What are some of the questions you have? Like I said that's my hometown and I love it: good and the bad.


    A shot I took one night years ago...now I'm homesick.


    From the ferry pier at Coronado


    Coronado Beach at Sunset


    The Fountain in Balboa Park


    Imperial Beach Pier


    Botanical Garden in Balboa Park



    Aww...the nostalgia!! I lived there too, loved it, and miss it!! I even volunteered at the CCDC Downtown Information Center. Hopefully, Civic San Diego can fill the void adequately. There are also The Downtown San Diego Partnership, San Diego Downtown Residents Group, Save Our Heritage Organization, and many others working to keep SD great. I was also impressed by all the "open space" or "natural parks" that were saved from development, like Tecolate Canyon and my favorite, Los Penasquitos Canyon , and how the San Pasqual Valley, though in the city limits, is designated an agricultural and open space preserve. While obviously not perfect, I think many cities and city planners can learn from San Diego and use it as a model.

  5. #5
    Member
    Registered
    May 2013
    Location
    Long Beach, CA
    Posts
    18
    Fyi, San Diego is the second largest city in California in both acreage and population. Now compare it with the megalopolis, the massive urban and suburban sprawled monster with little open space or natural areras in its city proper, only mostly on the fringes, and no more agricultural areas, that is LA.

    -Chris

  6. #6
    Member
    Registered
    May 2013
    Location
    Long Beach, CA
    Posts
    18
    "...and used to walk from there to Little Italy every Saturday for the best Farmer's Market in all of San Diego."
    I used to live in Little Italy!! It has LIA and LIRA.

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