February 2020 home page

support us

Marisol Measure G: Commentary:
NO on G

Felise Levine | Forest Way

Depiction of Marisol site on bluffs. Source: Marisol.

When I review the Marisol Initiative, the benefits of affordable housing, increased tax revenue to the city, and the developer’s “conceptual plans” for a loop trail, environmentally sensitive buildings, increased public access to coastal views and bluff protection, I find my brain spinning about all of the promised amenities to our city. I also find myself at odds with many of my friends and political allies, while weirdly aligning with those whom I often disagree. Yet, here I am opposing Measure G.

I am opposed to Measure G because I object to the process of development by Initiative. I object to the timeline established by a March election that short cuts community discussion. I object to the fact that city committees cannot hold educational forums before the election and have been gagged by our City Council. I object that the developer, although not required by the Initiative process, has chosen not to erect story poles. Story poles would give us a clearer picture of what we will be voting on, such as the reality of height and mass of this resort. Del Mar has a design review process that serves our community. The developers chose to short cut and bypass the Del Mar way. I object.

Although supporters accurately claim that the steps in the review process will proceed as usual, in reality the Design Review Board and City Council are bound by the development and land use guidelines designed by the Developer, not our city ordinances or Community Plan. The Initiative clearly states that when in conflict with the Community Plan, the developer’s guidelines will determine outcome. The net effect is to hamstring the DRB and the City Council, thus preventing our community from truly having input once we actually see the developers plans. This is not just a simple rezoning Initiative. The implications are broader. I object.

In addition to traffic and light pollution concerns, I am very concerned about the resort's impact on our Scripps Bluff Preserve. Currently the preserve is an oasis, a tranquil place to hike, to enjoy the vistas. Are the developers magicians? How will they hide 3 story buildings plus necessary rooftop equipment from visitors in the Preserve and the surrounding neighborhood?
On a positive note, I am delighted that the developers have committed to giving our city 22 units of affordable housing. However, I worry that the initial benefit towards meeting our housing requirement will be offset by new formulas that must calculate the influx of workers. So, in the long run, I worry that Del Mar’s housing requirement may be increased not reduced.

A lot of money is at stake as the developer promotes its vision for Del Mar. But do we have to give these developers a coveted Initiative that gives them so much control over developing this land. I object!



© 2007-2020 Del Mar Community Alliance, Inc.  All rights reserved.