Around 2010, the city of Vista began some municipal soul-searching.
The City Council looked to redevelop underused areas – like a suburban shopping plaza called Breeze Hill Promenade – into places that could serve neighborhoods and bring some life to the streets.
The city was working on a new General Plan, a vision to guide its future, with a goal to replace car-oriented development in certain areas, with mixed residential and retail buildings oriented toward the street to improve walkability and public safety, and to fight climate change.
Most cities define “mixed use” as a combination of residential and commercial development. Vista officials, thinking more about how to kick-start development downtown, allowed developers to decide how much residential or retail they would build, including none.