District 2 Councilmember Lorie Zapf’s aide Monique Tello said Zapf was surprised by a recent 6-3 vote denying her request for an emergency ordinance banning motorized scooters on beach boardwalks. But Tello said Zapf would continue to lobby for tightening of regulations governing scooters, which can exceed the 8 mph speed limit possibly threatening public safety.
Tello said Monday, July 16 is the scheduled date for the next full City Council hearing on short-term vacation rentals. Mayor Kevin Faulconer is expected to be releasing his own proposal for amending regulations governing short-term rentals earlier that month.
Later during discussion of the new Balboa/Pacific Beach trolley stop, board member RJ Kunysz outlined his own proposal for alleviating problems with trolley stop access by non-motorized vehicles via construction of a new pedestrian bike bridge closer to Mission Bay.
“The City plan is for access to Balboa transit stop from the current Rose Creek bike path, going a half mile up to get to the transit area,” said Kunysz. “People are not going to do that, because they would have to ride through one of the most dangerous, high-volume traffic areas for cars and people in an underpass jammed beneath I-5.”
Kunysz offered an alternative.
“I’m proposing putting the pedestrian bike bridge halfway in between the Balboa Avenue bridge and Clairemont Drive,” he said, adding, “That way it would not cause drop-off jams on streets.”
De Anza plan
Pam Heatherington, of the Environmental Center of San Diego, expressed concern about the interconnection between the De Anza Revitalization Plan to revitalize the aquatic regional park, and construction of the trolley stop.
“What is the nexus between these two projects?” she asked.
“They do butt up against one another. More importantly, runoff from either will flow into Rose Creek and the bay.”
City planner Michael Prinz, project manager for the Balboa Avenue/Pacific Beach station, replied the two projects, though interrelated, “are not connected, though they are moving forward concurrently.”
Karin Zirk, of Friends of Rose Creek, was dismayed that a previous expectation that the city would have Rose Creek designated as parkland has never been acted upon. “There has been no change to management of Rose Creek,” she said, adding that means no trash pickup, except irregularly by volunteers, and no attention paid to addressing homeless encampments in the Rose Creek watershed.
“In 1992, PBPG recommended that Rose Creek be designated as a park with appropriate park services, including a part-time ranger,” Zirk said.
Prinz answered that Rose Creek is being managed by the city’s Storm Water Division, adding it has been determined Rose Creek “is not suitable to be dedicated as parkland currently or in the future.” Prinz added however that Rose Creek “will remain designated, protected open space land.”