|Location||San Diego, CA|
|Description||The August hearing was held in San Diego. The “Children’s Pool” issue was heard and the Commission voted to allow the City of San Diego to update the Land Use Plan to incorporate additional resource protections during the Harbor Seal pupping season. The Commission also grappled with a dispute resolution where an Applicant was appealing the Executive Director’s decision that the application is incomplete—because the proposed project is located on a public easement, the debate was very interesting. The most controversial item, the “Broad Beach” application, was postponed. The item is now scheduled for the October meeting where the Commission will consider homeowners requests to retain a large, unpermitted rock revetment and conduct a large-scale beach nourishment project that will impact public access and harm Marine Protected Areas.|
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|Bay City Partner’s Appeal of Executive Director Determination|| This vote was not based on the merits of the proposed project, but whether the project application is complete. Commission Staff deemed the application incomplete and the Applicant appealed Staff’s decision. While the Commission was not voting on the project itself, some Commissioners expressed concerns over the fact that the project requires a “land exchange” with State Lands Commission (SLC) and there is currently no official agreement in place. The land swap would involve SLC relinquishing public land and acquiring another parcel of land in a different location (near an old oil plant, with less biological and recreational value).
The property in question is currently designated as “Visitor Serving/Commercial”, yet the Applicant asserts that “visitor serving use” is not financially viable, and requested the land designation be changed to residential. Over the past year, Commission Staff repeatedly requested additional information from the Applicant to no avail, including: (1) an approved land exchange from SLC concluding the public trust easement no longer exists where residential use is proposed; (2) “rate of return” analysis for the proposed residential project; and (3) a mitigation proposal for the loss of visitor-serving overnight accommodations.
|City of San Diego Local Coastal Program Amendment Regarding Children’s Pool||The City of San Diego sought to revise public access and marine resource protection policies in its Land Use Plan (LUP) to allow a seasonal closure at Children’s Pool Beach in La Jolla during the Harbor Seal pupping season (from December 15 to May 15 of every year). The amendment provides special protection of the Children’s Pool seal population during pupping season. During the five-month closure period, beach access would be prohibited. However the breakwater surrounding the beach area would remain open throughout the year.|