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Viewpoint Watermark:
Wade Walker | Oribia Road

Thirty years ago Del Mar was faced with two ambitious projects seeking approval. When first proposed, the Plaza and L’Auberge Del Mar were different than the familiar buildings we know today. Both were considerably larger and more dominant on the skyline. Through the action of concerned citizens both projects were modified to be more in sync with the character of the town. The Plaza was diminished in size and the hotel was made both smaller and lower to preserve the views of the ocean. This citizen input was made possible by an initiative, Measure B, subsequently voted into law, that protects the central business district (only) from zoning changes without a vote of the people.
We are now faced with a similar situation at the north end of town. The Watermark residential development as proposed will add 48 living units and 480 car trips per day to an intersection that is already at times impassable. Moreover it is adjacent to the San Dieguito Lagoon, a sensitive wetland area. To squeeze in that much density, the project will use all the available space at three levels, resulting in an out of scale edifice.

This is possible because without the protection of a Measure B like initiative, the current zoning of the site can be changed by a vote of the City Council that seems inclined to do so. We need a “new” version of Measure B to protect residential neighborhoods from ill-considered development. Your neighbors will be walking Del Mar this next month with a petition to do just that. We appreciate your support.

 

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