When the Port of San Diego decides the future of Harbor Island and Seaport Village out of a list of ideas put forward by developers, it could end up choosing the same developer for both projects.
Local developer Oliver McMillan has proposed major overhauls of both properties. Port commissioners Wednesday could select the company’s redevelopment plan for Seaport Village – or whittle down its list of six options and make a final decision later.
But Oliver McMillan isn’t the only local developer with the chance of shaping a vast swath of San Diego’s waterfront.
Another bidder for the Seaport Village area is Doug Manchester. He could break ground by the end of the year on his massive Navy Broadway Complex project, which would include a new Navy headquarters plus hotels, offices, shops and open space, is next door to Seaport Village. He also developed the Manchester Grand Hyatt, also next door to Seaport Village and the Mariott Marquis next door to that. All of that property would have been conceptualized by Manchester.
The development team behind Manchester’s proposal also includes HKS Urban Design studio, which designed the project. HKS is also the company that wrote the Port’s vision statement and guiding principles. That happens to be the very same document the Port is grading each development proposal against, to ensure consistency with the Port’s long-term strategy.
Oliver McMillan is also vying to develop two substantial pieces of San Diego’s waterfront, though they aren’t contiguous. The company is competing with one other proposal for development rights on Harbor Island.
We Stand Up for You. Will You Stand Up for Us?
In the Information for Developers, the Port excludes changes only to the Old Police Headquarters and the Fish Market restaurant. The graphic showing exclusions does not include Ruocco Park. Is the Port offering our new (August 2012) waterfront park, built with public funds and private funds (Ruocco Endowment Fund) to be redeveloped as well? Too bad that the Port doesn't have the parkland protection we have in our City Charter that requires a 2/3 majority public vote to change the status of public parkland. Is there any way to ensure that the Port won't steal this park from the public?
What is the reasoning for wanting to extend the streets to the waterfront? I'd really like to know! The only streets I can think of that this would apply to are Kettner Blvd., which already extends to the North Embarcadero Park and Pacific Highway, which is within less than a block of the Bay front. Harbor Drive is already along the Bay - it can't be extended further.
By default the whole of downtown is part of the Seismic Hazard Special Studies Zone out west to the United States Bulkhead Line at the end of the Pier. Active Faulting is Presumed Active in the Seismic Safety Element of the General Plan. By default Seaport Village has Active Faulting therefore no habitable structures can be built. Or new development projects made. In Theory, according to the law.
For some reason, the Port did not know their western development boundary was the United States Bulkhead Line at the end of the Piers. It looks like the Port finally got a clue on their responsibilities, and more importantly Opportunities to make money for Port Staff and selected Developers by selling off our Public State Tidelands Trust heritage. New Unencumbered Land all for free.
Presumed Active Faulting of the 500-year old Coronado Fault of the Rose Canyon Fault Zone (RCFZ) starts at Seaport Village, crosses Ruocco Park, trends north-northwest through the Navy Broadway Complex (NBC), near the intersection of Broadway and Pacific Highway.
Prior to Ruocco Park, Terramar the developer of the Old Police Headquarters stopped their Mid-Rise projects and turned the area into the lovely Waterfront Park with public restrooms according to direction from Port staff. The area changed from Mid-Rise to Parks because active faulting was presumed and only park land and open space are allowed within 100 foot fault buffer setbacks per the Downtown Community Plan.
The Shady part was when the Unelected Port told Terramar not to turn in scientific evidence of active faulting or a final report for the proposed Mid-Rise structure, north of Seaport Village. This was why the Port of San Diego can say they have No Responsive Documents in Public Records Act (PRA) requests for geotechnical fault investigations for Seaport Village and Ruocco Park. Seismic and Geotechnical Field work with no Final Report.
SANDAG our Elected Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) under CEQA/NEPA is responsible for Consistency in Seismic Hazard Maps, and approval of Seaport Village or the Navy Broadway Complex (NBC). Thankfully SANDAG has to confirm or deny active faulting on Seaport Village and the Navy Broadway Complex (NBC).