By developing the land around its transit stations, the North County Transit District can earn some money off the land it owns, and help the region build housing in the mixed-use, transit-oriented projects it has said are needed to accommodate population growth.

A new state program funds low-income housing projects near transit stations. Only two San Diego County projects made the cut. Now SANDAG is asking the state to lower the program’s standards for how close projects must be to stations, so that more local projects can compete.

As San Diego’s urban neighborhoods struggle to build the low-income, transit-focused projects the city says it needs, the North County city is thriving. “The experience of San Marcos shows there is indeed a market for people to live near transit,” said one smart-growth advocate.

San Diego’s ambitious plan to cut greenhouse gas emissions by fundamentally changing the way residents get to work could be irrelevant before it’s even adopted. And the two politicians who’ve pushed it hardest – Mayor Kevin Faulconer and Councilman Todd Gloria – could cast votes that render it moot.


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