The Developer is pulling out all the stops.
In 2007, Kilroy Realty Corporation purchased the 22.8-acre site on the southwest corner of Del Mar Heights Road and El Camino Real in the heart of Carmel Valley for nearly $88 million. The site is Carmel Valley's last sizeable undeveloped parcel of commercial property. Since that time, the developer has marketed its One Paseo-Main Street project concept by sending a glossy 20-page brochure to every household in Carmel Valley, publishing a slick web site, and hosting countless public meetings serving meals or refreshments.
The marketing promotion focuses on the "neighboring gathering place" aspect of the proposed development through a series of contemporary, lifestyle artist renderings protraying selective views designed to minimize the scale of the project. The promotional materials fail to provide any details from which one could understand that the Main Plaza represents only 4.5% of the site area and the supporting retail uses represent less than 15% of the total building area. There is no mention of the total size of the proposed project, which is nearly 4X greater than the current allowable building area, nor that the height of the 10-story office and 10-story residential buildings far exceed the heights of any similar-use building in Carmel Valley, nor any details regarding the additional traffic generation by this requested increase in in allowable building area and change in use.
|Type Use||Existing Entitlement||Proposed Entitlement||Comments|
|Office||500,000 SF||536,000 SF||in a 10-story & 8-story building|
|Retail||270,000 SF||1- and 2-story buildings|
|150-room Hotel &||150,000 SF||5-story building|
|608 Residential Units||896,580 SF||in a 10-story & 4 5-story buildings|
|Total Building Area (excl. parking structures)||500,000 SF||1,852,580 SF||Nearly 4X existing entitlement|
|Parking Structures||None Needed||4 buildings, 3 to 7 levels|
|Total Building Area||500,000 SF||Over 3,652,580 SF|
|Estimated Traffic Generation (Trips per day)||6,000||26,000|
Why this is significant to residents and neighbors of Carmel Valley.
During rush hours, the intersections along Del Mar Heights Road at High Bluff Drive and Interstate 5 (I-5) are extremely congested. Many of us may recall how in 2006 and 2007, these intersections were essentially non-functioning when office space was at its highest occupancy. The proposed Main Street project's 1,852,580 square feet of development (not including parking structures), which is well over the 500,000 square feet of suburban office planned for the site, will contribute much more gridlock to Carmel Valley roads and significantly increase travel times in the community.
Similarly, traffic along El Camino Real is frequently impacted as commuters find alternate routes to avoid I-5's congestion. This situation will also be exacerbated by the filling up of existing vacant space and the construction of currently entitled space.
ANY CHANGE IN USE on ANY parcel in Carmel Valley that INCREASES TRAFFIC GENERATED ABOVE CURRENT ENTITLEMENTS IS UNACCEPTABLE.
Any resident or business owning or renting property in Carmel Valley has a right to all of the protections that are afforded by the Community Plan. Neighboring communities, that are facing their own problems with traffic, will be affected by the changes in use and increased traffic in Carmel Valley as well.
Decision time is near!
The project is currently processing through the City of San Diego Planning Department. A Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR) is expected to be released for a 45-day public comment period in late 2011. (There is a concern that the developer might release the DEIR near the holiday season, thus limiting the capacity of the community to respond.) The project is likely to go before the San Diego Planning Commission in Spring 2012 and City Council in Summer 2012 for final approval.
Until the recent outreach to the community by the WhatPriceMainStreet committee, the only public input that the Planning Department was hearing about the Main Street project was the developer stating that the comments it has received are overwhelmingly positive. The recent influx of opposing comments has shown the claim of overwhelming positive support to be false, but the fight is far from over. If you have concerns or negative feelings about the project or its density and accompanying impacts , it is important that you communicate them to the planning officials.
THE TIME IS NOW FOR YOU TO VOICE YOUR CONCERNS!