The Origins of Institutionalized Racism – a System to Control Blacks … and Whites

February 27, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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100 Years Before Lexington and Concord, Bacon’s Armed Rebellion of Whites and Blacks Forced Plantation Elite to Create System of Racial Slavery

By Frank Gormlie

Since the turmoil last year in Ferguson, Missouri, swept in a new civil rights movement, once again America is faced with the reality of its system of institutionalized racism. For Americans with conscience, understanding this system is key to changing it, and it cannot be understood without understanding its origins which trail back, of course, to colonial America.

Confronting a system that predates the very formation of the Republic itself necessitates understanding its raison d’etre – its reason for being. Why is there such a system that has a solid foundation and that has existed all this time, and is so deeply ingrained? Why is there institutionalized racism? If one accepts such a premise, that there is such a thing, then the most obvious answer is that it exists to control blacks, African-Americans. And to control other minorities, Mexican-Americans, Native Americans.

Yet this system is not meant to only control blacks – and other peoples of color – but it also is meant to control white people.

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News and Notices for Ocean Beach and the Peninsula

February 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Mission Beach to Get New Lifeguard Station and Ocean Beach Doesn’t

South Mission Beach is about to get a new lifeguard station. And meanwhile, Ocean Beach continues with its own aging lifeguard tower and deteriorating restrooms. The Mission Beach Precise Planning Board was briefed on the new development at their meeting on Feb. 17. City engineer Jihad Sleiman told the group:

“The lifeguard tower was constructed in 1974 as a temporary facility. It is deteriorated, small, old and no longer serves the needs of the city lifeguards and the beach going public on this mile-long section of beach.”

He explained that the new station will have a rescue vehicle facility to store rescue craft, trucks and first-aid kits, and will also have separate men’s and women’s restrooms and a main observation tower on the third level. He called the new tower “an orientation landmark on the beach.” The total lifeguard tower replacement cost: $4.9 million. Construction is expected to start within the next few weeks and be completed by summer 2016.

The main lifeguard tower in OB is from the 1980s but is in very bad condition. The restrooms are an embarrassment. Various groups have been lobbying for its replacement for a while now. Perhaps with a new city councilperson, the efforts can be rejoined.

Robb Field Skate Park Now Is 15 years Old

The OB Robb Field Skate Park turned 15 a week ago on Thursday, Feb. 19. On Feb. 19, 2000, the park opened with a celebration with more than $25,000 in prize giveaways. And it was a dedicated group of volunteers who did the fundraising and development of the iconic skate park.They worked with then-Councilman Byron Wear and his staff. Some of the key volunteers were

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Vacation Rentals Roil Beach Neighbors – Issue to Be Taken Up by City Council

February 24, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Councilwoman Zapf to Hold Hearings in April

Neighbors of some housing units that are used as vacation rentals in the beach areas are upset. And the new city councilwoman for the district is getting an earful from residents in Pacific Beach and Mission Beach. Her office has received multiple complaints from constituents about beach homeowners who have made their homes into full-time rentals and their unruly visitors.

Not coincidentally, PB and Mission Beach are the 2 neighborhoods with the highest concentrations of Airbnb rentals. Zapf told the Voice of San Diego that she heard the concerns of residents at a recent PB town council meeting almost “near tears” in accounts of the “constant rotation of people coming and going”.

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OB Town Council Meeting on Public Safety – Wed., Feb. 25

February 24, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The February public meeting of the Ocean Beach Town Council will focus on public safety with a number of community groups set to address issues such as watching out for another and creating a neighborhood watch group.

The meeting – as usual – will be held this Wednesday, February 25, in the Masonic Center- 1711 Sunset Cliffs Boulevard.

President Gretchen Newsom will gavel the meeting to order at 7 pm.

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Historic Cottages of Ocean Beach on Display – Photo Gallery

February 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Historian Kathy Blavatt and cottage-renovators Jane and Tom Gawronski gave their presentation on the historic cottages of Ocean Beach last night at the OB Historical Society’s standing-room-only monthly event.

With a great slideshow riveting the audience, Kathy led the crowd through a visual display of the wonderful cottages of the village. Many of them have taken advantage of the Mills Act – (and there is more info on it at the OB Historical Society’s website). The Mills Act gives tax advantages to home owners who are able to quality their houses as historic. The historic nature involves the exterior of the house.

Here, what follows, is a photo gallery of the slideshow

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It Was Syrian Kurd Leftists Who Kicked Islamic State Out of Kobani

February 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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In international news, the recent liberation of the Syrian city of Kobani from the control of Islamic State (ISIS) fighters by Syrian Kurd rebels was a little reported story which popped up briefly for its 15 minutes on the mainstream media roulette wheel of fame. Then it disappeared. But the under-reported little story – a story with a huge irony – deserves retelling.

The story – which can be pieced together from a number of media reports – involves the identity of the major fighting force that kicked ISIS out of Kobani, a city of 200,000 mainly ethnic Kurds in north Syria, a stone’s throw from the Turkish border.

It turns out it was a group of Syrian Kurd leftists who kicked ISIS’ ass, if you forgive the vernacular, after 4 months of intense house-to-house fighting, at times room-to-room, and pushed them out of the city entirely. It was the People’s Protection Units, a local leftist organization, and its affiliate, the Women’s Protection Units, that have collective command structures and believe in the equality of women, and – in fact – have numerous women commanders in the fighting units. (These are new wave Sixties leftists, not from the old school like China, Russia, North Korea.)

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Well-Known OB Local, Jimmy Marudas, Arrested by Police for Point Loma Stabbing

February 15, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

NEW UPDATE: Witness: Marudas out and back home by 1:30 pm

A neighbor of Jimmy Maroutes Marudas has reported that he saw Marudas out of police custody and back at his home in Ocean Beach by 1:30 pm. No more details are available, other than to say this neighbor saw Jimmy “cleaning up his garage and side walk area”.

UPDATE: See below

OCEAN BEACH – In a breaking news development, a well-known Ocean Beach local has just been arrested for the stabbing of a woman in Point Loma on Saturday.

Jimmy Marudas Maroutes, who has lived on Voltaire Street for decades, was taken away by San Diego police this morning, Sunday, Feb. 15, at approximately 10 a.m.

We spoke to Marudas’ conservator, Dan Zolezzi, by phone, and he told the OB Rag that he believed that Marudas, who has been diagnosed with schizophrenia, was arrested by police for the stabbing.

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Ocean Beach Sunday Sunset Clean-Up – Feb. 15

February 13, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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From CIS- OB – Sunday Sunset

Every Sunday locals meet up for a trash clean up. After most weekends, there have been extra guests in town and additional trash left behind. Sunday at 4:40pm – 5:30pm

The objectives are:

  • 1) Making a consistent group effort to clean up our town
  • 2) Catching an awesome sunset that you wish you got out to enjoy more often

The time of the event will be a little different each week so that we can start about 45 minutes before the sunsets.

We will meet up each week at the pier entrance at the end of Niagara Ave.

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There Are Democratic Elections to Community Planning Boards Because of One Ocean Beach Group in the 1970s

February 11, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ocean Beach Community Planning Group Was the Forerunner to OB’s Planning Board

In one month, on March 10th, the Ocean Beach Planning Board will hold its annual election of Board members. It will take place at the OB Rec Center. Every resident, property owner and business-owner in Ocean Beach is authorized to vote – with ID proving residency.

One of the main reasons that this election is going forward next March – as it has been for the last 39 years – is because of the vision and diligence of a small group that existed back in the 1970s. It was the persistent push over a several year period during the mid-Seventies for an election of this nature – a democratic election – to a neighborhood planning committee by an organization called the Ocean Beach Community Planning Group that was ultimately responsible for this democratic gain for communities.

The forerunner of today’s OB Planning Board, the Community Planning Group (CPG), led a campaign of achieving City authorization for neighborhoods to host elections to their planning committees – elections that even allowed tenants – non-property-owners or non-business people – to vote – in regular grassroots balloting.

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San Diego City Council Reverses Planning Commission – Rejects Proposed Development on Jessop Estate

February 10, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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By a 6 to 3 vote, the San Diego City Council rejected a proposed development for the Jessop Estate in Point Loma. In doing so, the Council reversed the Planning Commission which had voted 5-1 in June 2014 to approve it. The vote had to do with a resident’s appeal of the Planning Commission’s approval.

Dozens of Point Lomans, many part of a new group called Preserve Point Loma, attended the hearing in support of the Council’s rejection of the project.

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News from the Ocean Beach Sands of Time

February 9, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Hodad’s Re-Opens

On Sunday, Feb. 8, Hodad’s reopened after a grieve-stricken 2-day hiatus from business as staff and family dealt with the untimely death of Mike Hardin. Quite a spontaneous memorial was set up in the doorway of Hodad’s on Friday, a day after everyone found out about Mike’s death. The U-T reported:

Hardin was found dead in a room at a Madera County Holiday Inn Thursday afternoon. There was nothing suspicious found in the hotel room, a sheriff’s official there said, but an autopsy was ordered because the death was unexpected.

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Survey of Ocean Beach Development Projects

February 9, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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On occasion, the OB Rag publishes a survey and update on local construction projects in OB. So, here is our latest – a survey of projects – in various states of development – within Ocean Beach and close-by neighborhoods in Point Loma and the Midway District.

The West Point Loma Wall

Number four has reached its framed height and stands with the others in a wall of gentrification on the 5100 block of West Pt Loma. It was this type of development that helped spur interest in having the new OB Community Plan passed by the City Council, a new plan that restricts over-development. These buildings all received waivers from the City ….

Saratoga Condos Appear Ready

The largest new development project to hit the waterfront of Ocean Beach – the Saratoga condos – appears completed and ready for occupation.

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Mike Hardin – Owner of OB’s Hodad’s – Has Passed – RIP

February 6, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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One of the most successful businessmen and restauranteurs in OB’s history, has passed away. Mike Hardin, owner of the most famous restaurant in the seaside village, Hodad’s Burgers, on Newport Avenue died in Fresno.

His body was found in a Madera County Holiday Inn on Thursday, Feb. 5th, after Mike had traveled to Northern California to see his daughter. Cause of death is unknown at this time.

Hardin’s Hodad’s will be closed today, Friday, to allow his workers and friends some time to take this tragic death in. Ironically, Hodad’s will also be closed on Saturday for a memorial and funeral for one of Mike’s employees, Kyle Witkowski, who died recently in a car accident.

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Ocean Beach Planning Board Votes Against Demolition of 100-Year-Old House

February 5, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn a bold move that would put a smile on any preservationist, the Ocean Beach Planning Board last night voted against approving a proposed development for 4677 Niagara that included the demolition of the current house, originally built in 1915.

At their monthly meeting, after the developer’s presentation and a lengthy question and comment session, the Board voted 8-2-1 against the developer’s application for a permit to build two condos on the lot, once the lot had been cleared of the old hundred-year-old structure.

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Police Statistics for OB Precinct Show Decline in Robberies and Car Prowls

February 4, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Last week at the Ocean Beach Town Council meeting, Community Relations Officer David Surwilo handed out some papers for viewing during his presentation on the recent crime wave in OB.

Among the papers was a map showing crimes for the month of December 2014 in the various police precincts for the Peninsula, including Ocean Beach. The over-all Peninsula service area is 610 and is broken down into 8 different precincts.

Most of OB is in precinct no. 614. Others include Sunset Cliffs in 618, La Playa 616, Midway District in 611.

The map for OB’s 614 displays 5 residential burglaries and 1 commercial burglary for December.

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OB Planning Board: Demolition of Over 100-Year-Old House on Niagara

February 3, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Ocean Beach Planning Board meets this Wednesday, February 4th, at the OB Rec Center, over at 4726 Santa Monica Avenue, at 6pm sharp.

The main action item on the Board’s agenda is the proposed demolition and construction at 4677 Niagara Avenue. The plan is for the developer to demolish the old, old over 100-year-old house on the lot and construct two detached residential condo units. The lot is on a steep slice of Niagara and is .16 acres.

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Claudia Jack: The ‘Go-To-Woman’ of Ocean Beach

February 3, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Claudia Jack – a venerable fixture in a “who’s-who” of the people who make OB run – is definitely THE “Go-to-Woman” of Ocean Beach. If you need something, somebody, or have a question or issue about OB, Claudia’s the woman to see. It was just a couple of months ago that the OB Town Council presented her with their Lifetime Achievement Award for 2014.

Finally catching up with her last Wednesday as she sat in a chair almost in the middle of Newport Avenue, I grabbed a metal folding chair next to her, got out my (paper) tablet and pen and for the next hour or so quizzed Claudia on who she is and what she does.

It was a Farmers Market day and that block of Newport is closed down to traffic and canopies and the aroma of foods take over.

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“Record Turn-out” at Ocean Beach Town Council Meeting

January 29, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Council Hosts Councilwoman Zapf, Hands Out Parade Awards and Police Give Update on Local Crimes

To a standing-room only crowd, with pizza being handed out over on the side, with a couple of TV cameras in motion, Ocean Beach Town Council president Gretchen Newsom loudly gaveled the monthly meeting to order. The crowd of over 200 took their seats in the large auditorium of the Masonic Center on Sunset Cliffs Blvd.

Newsom called it a “record turn-out” for a town council meeting and then deftly guided the meeting over the next 2 hours, which included handing out awards for the winners of the 35th Annual OB Holiday Parade, and opening the floor up for non-agenda items during which a number of people aired complaints and issues. The room remained in a near-festive mood throughout the evening and not an uncivil word spoken.

The Friends of the OB Library made a big show, wearing “Cat in the Hat” costumes, and addressed the audience and the Councilwoman about the need to expand the local branch.

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A Call for Ocean Beach to Turn Out for Town Council Meeting – Tonight, Wed. Jan. 28th

January 28, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Tonight, Wednesday, January 28, the Ocean Beach Town Council is hosting their monthly public meeting, and besides dishing out the awards to December’s Holiday Parade winners, the Council will be welcoming new District 2 Councilwoman Lorie Zapf to the community. Representatives of the San Diego Police Department will also be on hand, as usual.

The meeting will be gaveled to order by president Gretchen Newsom very close tot 7 pm and is held at the Masonic Center, 1711 Sunset Cliffs Blvd. See the meeting agenda.

The OB Rag urges all OBceans to attend this meeting and let Councilwoman Zapf know your issues and priorities. We especially believe there are serious infrastructure problems in Ocean Beach – such as the needed expansion of the OB Library, as well as a new lifeguard station, street lights, etc.

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Memo Shows Expansion of Ocean Beach Library Budget Priority for Councilwoman Zapf

January 26, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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A City of San Diego memo from the office of Councilwoman Lorie Zapf that the OB Rag has obtained shows that the expansion of the Ocean Beach Library is one of Zapf’s top 7 budget concerns.

In a memo from Zapf to Andrea Tevlin, the Independent Budget Analyst, dated January 16, 2015, it states:

“It is important that we fully fund the expansion of the Ocean Beach library.”

Even though the OB Library is listed as number 7 on the list, the memo begins:

“Below is a list of Council District 2 priorities that I would like to see included in the upcoming budget discussions. This list is not in a ranked order.” (Our emphasis)

The memo then goes on to list 7 priorities, with number 7 being “Ocean Beach Library Expansion”.

The other six funding priorities include Police officer retention, De Anza Cove Plan update, street repairs, and the Ocean Beach Lifeguard Station.

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Warning Signs Are Up at Ocean Beach: Stay Out of the Water

January 23, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The signs are up at Ocean Beach that warn people to stay out of the water. The County Department of Environmental Health says the bacteria levels in the water exceed healthy standards. Anyone who swims or surfs in the area takes the risk of getting sick.

This is especially important to follow right now, as weather reports have the weekend warming up into the 70s.

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History of the Ocean Beach Library

January 22, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Editor: The following is primarily based on a short paper by the Friends of the OB Library.

The original Ocean Beach branch library opened on Abbott Street at Santa Monica Avenue in 1916. It was in a one-room storefront location. Margaret Rankin became the librarian in 1921, and immediately began campaigning for funds for a new and larger branch.

Seven years later, she was successful, and in October of 1928 a new library did indeed open – and it’s been there ever since, at the corner of Santa Monica and Sunset Cliffs Blvd. Smaller than the current branch, the original building had classic proportions and more windows than what we have today.

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Sign the Petition in Support of the Ocean Beach Library Expansion

January 22, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Friends of the Ocean Beach Library are circulating a petition these days in support of the expansion of the OB branch. It states:

“We support the expansion of the Ocean Beach Branch Library from the current 4,000-square foot size to a modernized 15,000-square-foot facility that retains the historic core.”

It ends with an appeal to the mayor and City Council:

“We urge the Mayor and Council to support this top community priority …”

___________
COME INSIDE FOR A RE-PRINTABLE VERSION OF THE PETITION

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Friends of Ocean Beach Library Gear Up Campaign to Get Branch Back on City Expansion List

January 21, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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The Friends of the OB Library are not happy. They’ve been working to get the local branch back on the city’s library expansion list for awhile now, but the recent news that the Ocean Beach Library is not on the list was upsetting to many of them.

So, the committee of about a dozen OBceans, with women outnumbering men 6 to 1, headed by Judy Collier, decided at their monthly meeting yesterday, Jan. 20, to gear up their campaign. They will continue to push their petition …

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Town Council Prez Urges OBceans to Come Out to Meet Councilwoman Zapf

January 21, 2015 by Frank Gormlie

Newsom Cites Spike in Numbers of Travelers in OB and Spike in Complaints About Them

Gretchen Newsom is urging OBceans to come out to the next OB Town Council meeting next week and meet the new Councilwoman for Ocean Beach – Lorie Zapf – elected last year.It will be held on Wednesday, January 28th at the Masonic Center.

She has real concerns these days about a spike in the numbers of travelers in Ocean Beach lately. Newsom is the president of the OB Town Council, recently elected to a 2nd term. And she is no stranger to working with homeless …

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Despite Disappointing Turnout, 100 San Diegans March 4 Miles for Justice

January 20, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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By Frank Gormlie

It wasn’t a massive turnout here in San Diego Monday for the 4 Mile March – far from it – but you can’t get away from the fact that one hundred San Diegans did march four miles for social justice in an effort to rekindle Martin Luther King’s militancy on his celebrated birthday.

San Diego joined a list of at least 30 other cities nationwide that also had “4MileMarches”. A small crowd of around 140 gathered at the City Heights park next to its library – about a quarter African-Americans – , …

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OB’s People’s Food Expansion Plans Put on Hold

January 19, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Organic Store Had Agreement With “Tiny” of Tiny’s Tavern Before His Recent Passing

By Frank Gormlie

The expansion plans of Ocean Beach’s largest employer, the famous OB People’s Organic Food Market, have been placed on hold due to the unfortunate and untimely death of “Tiny”, the owner of Tiny’s Tavern.

The market co-op, which is a mainstay on Voltaire Street in OB, has just recently purchased the two parcels of land directly to the store’s east, one containing a duplex and the other containing Tiny’s Tavern.

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Ocean Beach Business and Development Update

January 16, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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Here’s one of our irregular updates on Ocean Beach construction and development.

CJ Catering Moving Into Former Voltaire Street Bakery – Some good news for those with a sweet tooth,

CVS Opens in Former Apple Tree

In the Meantime New Apple Tree on Newport Makes Progress

Saratoga Condos to Open February 1

New Poles at Site of Future Sunset Plaza

Fourth 3-Story Behemoth on West Pt Loma Makes a Fine Blocked View

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OB Library Expansion Not in City’s Construction Pipeline Despite Promise Over 10 Years Old

January 14, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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In a kick to the gut to OB supporters of an expansion of the Ocean Beach library, San Diego just announced the next two “waves” of construction and expansions of libraries across town – and they do not include the OB branch.

This despite the promise by the city to expand the current and historic OB library into a two -story building complete with a courtyard. The city even purchased property next door in anticipation of the planned expansion. Architects were hired and models and plans of the new library were shown to members of the OB Planning Board. The plans included retaining the main historic building. This was back in 2003.

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Reader Rave: Residents, Students and Point Loma Planners Clean-Up Future Park

January 14, 2015 by Frank Gormlie
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By Jon Linney

On Saturday January 10 we cleaned up the future walk-in park site at Avenida de Portugal and Scott Street. Gone are the dead acacia trees and tumbleweeds that represented a fire hazard. Gone are the cans, bottles and other urban trash. Now absent are the years of construction debris: steel girders, cinder blocks, blocks of concrete, dumploads of gravel and once-molten asphalt.

A dangerous blind curve along Canon Street is now much more visible thanks to our tree pruning. Water has been taking its toll on the park site. The cleanup also involved smoothing the surface to slow or stop the erosion while money is raised and planning done to develop the park.

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