Downtown Mobility Plan: A Reason to Love San Diego in 2016

Biking by the beach
Biking in San Diego could be so much better. Photo: Flickr/Nathan Rupert

Some of you may have heard the news about the Downtown Mobility Plan, and UrbDezine has a short summary about the plan. NextCity had a great writeup about it and Damien Newton was kind enough to chat with me about the plan, tentatively scheduled for adoption by City Council in May this year. Public comments were due last Friday, and you can review our letter here.

The Downtown Mobility Plan is a result of a Settlement Agreement between Save Our Forest and Ranchlands  and Civic San Diego’s predecessor (Center City Development Corporation) and related parties. Despite, or perhaps inspite of, the legal background, Civic San Diego has delivered on an excellent plan for re-envisioning downtown San Diego’s streets to offer residents and visitors alike a way to get around without being forced to drive.

Yet, there will be challenges ahead prior to council adoption. The Little Italy Association has voiced opposition to the plan on account of potentially (as in, maybe) losing 50 vehicle parking spaces, despite the existence of a brand-new, shiny, taxpayer funded parking garage that was opened last year and approximately 65,000 parking spaces available within the 2 square mile radius that is downtown San Diego. As Hillcrest learned, vehicle parking is not a primary factor to business vitality or success. There is ample research demonstrating that converting street parking into bike lanes are good for business. Hopefully the individuals heading Little Italy Association come around and become champions for the Downtown Mobility Plan.