News From Ocean Beach and the Peninsula

by on October 1, 2014 · 11 comments

in California, Culture, Economy, Environment, History, Ocean Beach

Former Barnard School Site Readied for Massive Apartment Complex

The former site of Barnard Elementary School in the Midway area of Point Loma looks nothing like it used to. Instead, the area is being prepared for one of the most massive apartment complexes to be built in the area.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe San Diego Unified School District voted in October 2012to sell the property as part of their plan to balance that year’s budget. In the auction, it had brought in a high bid of $16.5 million.   This is what we reported back then:

The Barnard site – 9.37 acres -is located at 930 Barnard Street, a block from West Point Loma Avenue in the Midway area. The “coastal zone” property was on the chopping block for a minimum bid of $9.14 million. Originally opened during World War II for Navy children, the elementary school had been acquired by the School District after the war, and used every since until recently.

Voltaire’s “Salty Paws” Closed – No Match for “Dog Beach Dog Wash”

The most recent dog wash shop on Voltaire Street has just closed and the space is up for rent, reportedly for $4,000 a month. Salty Paws had been the second reincarnation of a dog wash at that corner spot at Voltaire and Cable. The first one at that site, called something like “World-Famous”, closed a while ago, having unsuccessfully tried to out dog-wash OB’s primo dog wash, the Dog Beach Dog Wash just down the street.  The story is that the owner of World Famous had barged into Dog Beach Dog Wash one day many a moon ago, and demanded that the owners sell it to him.  When they laughed, he reportedly threatened that he would open up his own dog wash and drive them out of business.  So much for that.

Daryl McDonald  Named “Lifeguard of the Year” 

Lifeguards help keep us safe in the water and Saturday the Mission Beach community and local political leaders honored two of its finest. Daryl McDonald has been a full-time lifeguard for 28 years and received the permanent “Lifeguard of the Year” award. Tore Blichfeldt, who is a full-time teacher and has been a lifeguard during the summer for the past 18 years, was honored with the seasonal “Lifeguard of the Year” award. The event was held as part of the grand re-opening ceremony for Swell Cafe and and the owners plan to make it an annual tradition. Channel 8

Voltaire and Catalina Complex Towers Above the Intersection

The large development at the corner of Voltaire Street and Catalina Blvd is still being constructed, but the size of the complex is beginning to dawn on those who drive or walk by. We noted this back in June when we reported:

One can begin to see the enormity of the new project going in at the busy intersection of Catalina and Voltaire.  As we have reported, what’s being constructed is a three-story “mixed-used” development that will include 8 townhomes, one flat, and one commercial space that has nearly 2130 square feet. This development will include 2 or 3 bedroom condos with attached 2-car garages.  The flat will be on the second floor with 2 bedrooms and have surface parking in the alley. The commercial condo unit at 2128 square feet will be located along Voltaire.  (Go here to view an artist’s rendering, more on the intersection, its history and controversy.)

Fight Near Dog Beach Results in 3 Sent to Hospital

A fight that went down in and around Dog Beach Parking lot on Monday, Sept 29, ended up with 3 people being sent to the hospital, reportedly with”stab wounds and blunt trauma injuries”. Police reported the incident happened at 5150 Voltaire Street – but that’s just the address given for that parking lot and area near OB’s famous Dog Beach. The fight was reported at 2:54 p.m. when a guy got into a heated debate with another guy and woman – all in their 20’s. The first guy was stabbed by the other guy. The guy stabbed left but returned with 3 friends armed with skate boards. They charge the stabber and his woman friend. It’s unclear who was injured in the melee, but police are investigating to see if anyone is charged.   SanDiego6

 City Wants to Settle the Long Fight in Mission Bay with Residents of De Anza Cove

A settlement may come soon in the long-running legal battle over San Diego’s plan to evict residents from a waterfront mobile home park on Mission Bay, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said Friday, Sept. 19th.  A settlement would pave the way for the city to pursue longtime plans to transform the 76-acre park into a hotel, recreation facility or some other community amenity. The City Council, in a session closed to the public, this week agreed to offer the roughly 300 residents of De Anza Cove about $22 million — plus another 7 million in attorney’s fees — to settle the case, City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said.  U-T San Diego

Elderly Point Loma Church Member Robbed

An elderly church member was opening up his Point Loma church when he was attacked and robbed early Tuesday morning, Sept. 30th, by two people. About 5 a.m., the 72-year-old man was attacked outside the Korean United Presbyterian Church at 3010 N. Evergreen St.  His car keys and wallet were taken and he was left on the sidewalk bleeding with facial injuries. He was taken to a hospital where he is expected to recover. San Diego police report that the robbers took his car keys and wallet. Channel10News

 Friends of OB Library Make Out in Book Sale

Wow! The Ocean Beach Friends of the Library made a whopping $528.35 at their Book Sale on Saturday, Sept 27th. They’d like to thank all who worked, donated, and bought.

 Point Loma couple finds $17,000 loss after renting home to vacationers via

After speaking out, a Point Loma couple has been told they will be reimbursed. They spoke out after a nightmare experience with the vacation-rental site  Paul and Stephanie Luczynski are dealing with more than $17,000 in damage and stolen property after renting out their three-bed room home using the website.  Electronics, jewelry, clothes, birth certificates and Paul’s car were all taken.

Now, Airbnb says it will reimburse the couple for the losses .

“It was an absolute nightmare,” said Paul. “We were so in shock we just felt violated.” They said they spoke to a man who called himself Bruce, but they never met him. He found their rental add on By phone, he said he would be bringing his family to stay over the Labor Day weekend. “He said they would treat it just like our own home and unfortunately that’s what they did,” said Paul. “They took everything they could get.” For the balance of the article, go to Channel 6News

 OB Hatchet Man Sent to Prison for 14 Years

An Ocean Beach man who repeatedly struck a jeweler with the blunt end of a hatchet was sentenced Sept. 19 to 14 years in state prison, a term of which he will have to serve 85 percent before he can be eligible for parole.  Travis Scott Kelley, 25, pleaded guilty to the attempted murder of 75-year-old Carl Hamlin at Hamlin Jewelers in El Cajon on Jan. 22. Kelley also pleaded guilty to robbery and two felony assaults.

Hamlin was seriously injured in the attack but recovered enough to testify against Kelley at a preliminary hearing. Hamlin told Deputy District Attorney Gordon Davis he will be closing the jewelry store and moving away. Hamlin opened his jewelry store in 1965.  “He attacked me every time I got up. Four times,” wrote Hamlin in a letter to El Cajon Superior Court Judge Laura Halgren, who read the letter during sentencing. For more go to

 Suit Against Former Western Div Lt Natalie Stone and Others Settled for $225,000

On September 23rd, the San Diego City Council approved a $225,000 settlement that had involved a number of police officers, including former Western Division Lt Natalie Stone, being sued in a civil rights suit.  The suite was  filed four years ago by a teen mother alleging that city police officers took her infant child away in 2008 without proper cause. The mother claimed that she “lost her baby daughter forever” because Lt. Natalie Stone, Sgt. Brent Williams, and Sgt. Linda Griffin took her 7-day-old infant away in North Park when there was no evidence to suggest the child “was in immediate danger of sustaining severe bodily injury or that the infant had been abandoned by her mother.”


{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Frank Gormlie October 1, 2014 at 12:52 pm

For the Barnard site, I did some quick math, and came up with about $40.50 per square foot that the School District sold it for.


Molly October 1, 2014 at 12:54 pm

OMG! That place where Barnard used to be is huge! I used to know friends who taught there. But this is ridiculous. More condos and apartments for the Point and beach area. Where are the kids of these folks going to go to school? Good going, school district – what foresight, what vision, sell it now and reap the money and forever lose the place. Nice


OB Joe October 1, 2014 at 12:58 pm

I had to chuckle. Isn’t the fight site the same areas as all those large gentrified houses? Hey, for those shelling out $2000 a week to visit, the homeless fighting could be part of their entertainment, could add to the cultural aspects of OB, could help be part of what makes OB OB. Here’s a thought on the fight in the parking lot area – will the fight raise or lower property values and rents? How could it raise rents, you ask? Well, if the fight brings in more police and private security patrols, then local landlords could benefit.


editordude October 1, 2014 at 12:59 pm

Dear readers: we will run our current poll on pedestrian controls at Newport and Abbott for one more day, so it will be coming down Thursday. So, if you care, get your vote in.


Graham Wellington October 1, 2014 at 1:17 pm

What happened to Stepanie’s bakery down the street from there? It’s gone too.


Marc Snelling October 1, 2014 at 2:13 pm

Happy to see the other dog wash closed. It was a lame move to open up a block away and try to steal the business and reputation of the Dog Beach Dog Wash. Guess they finally got tired of burning money and going up against a business that has done so much for the community.


Debbie October 1, 2014 at 5:50 pm

Renting your home with personal belongings over the internet? Who would think this is safe or a good idea? WHY is someone doing this? Not to mention, vacation rentals have no positive value for the rest of the neighborhood.

Sorry for you loss but don’t do it again! Leave weekend rentals for the hotels! Some goof ball is going to rent you house stick cameras in places you would never suspect and put your business on the internet…H-E-L-L-O!


Carrie Gray October 1, 2014 at 8:58 pm

I read on that there was an armed robbery on the corner of Catalina blvd and Alicia Dr. I can’t find anything in the news. Does anyone know anything about it ? Pretty scary! It reportedly happened at 2 am Subday morning . Two men were mugged at gunpoint.


obracer October 3, 2014 at 1:37 pm

Keep the checkbook open, lots of skeletons in Lt Stone’s closet.


Tom G October 6, 2014 at 7:35 pm

The same developer was behind the huge building kitty corner from Rocky’s on Ingraham St. in the Crown Point area, another former gas station site:


Mari October 7, 2014 at 4:21 pm

Way to go Lt. Natalie Stone, Sgt. Brent Williams, and Sgt. Linda Griffin!!!


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