Midway Community Planning Group Report: Sports Arena Black Angus to be demolished?

by on January 30, 2015 · 2 comments

in Economy, Environment, History, Ocean Beach

Midway Black AngusBy Tony de Garate

The long-vacant Black Angus at 3340 Sports Arena Blvd. could have an appointment with the wrecking ball, a city official has confirmed.

Patti Philips of the city’s Real Estate Assets Department gave a report about businesses that lease city-owned property on Sports Arena Boulevard. Black Angus fronts a five-acre mall called Sports Arena Square. The mall’s best-known tenant is Soma, an all-ages concert venue and one of several businesses tucked behind Black Angus.

The city has hired The Heritage Group to manage the mall, Philips said. Heritage is currently negotiating three-year leases with the businesses, which have been paying month-to-month. It will take about a month to determine how many businesses want to stay for three years and how many want to leave, Heritage officials said.

Converting the businesses to market-value, three-year leases could generate enough income to demolish Black Angus and renovate the rest of the property, Philips said. That could happen as early as this summer, though that estimate could prove to be too optimistic, she added.  The city has multiple options once Black Angus is leveled, Philips said.

First bike corral west of I-5?

Jacob McKean of Modern Times Brewery knows plenty of techniques for producing craft lagers and ales, but now he’s pitching a new recipe — for his curbside. He wants to remove the yellow paint long enough to park an 18-wheeler in front of his brewhouse at 3725 Greenwood St. and add 18 bicycle racks. If installed, this arrangement — known as a bike corral — would be the first of its kind west of I-5. (The first bike corral in San Diego appeared in Hillcrest in 2012.)

“It’s just dead space right now, and half my employees ride to work,” said McKean.

The board approved the corral 7-0-1 with the abstention coming from McKean himself, who joined the board last year.

The vote pleased Sam Ollinger, executive director of Bike San Diego, who let out a hearty “woo-hoo!” and immediately tweeted the news on her cell phone.

Homeless vet advocate joins board

David Siegler, vice president of grants and special projects at Veterans Village of San Diego (VVSD), is the board’s newest member. Siegler, a 25-year employee of the nonprofit charity at 4141 Pacific Highway, was appointed unanimously to fill a term that expires in 2017.

With Siegler’s appointment, three vacancies still remain on the 12-member board. The current lineup contains no residents and no representatives from the San Diego Sports Arena, known as the Valley View Casino Center, Board Chair Melanie Nickel said. Members said they would send notifications to the Sports Arena management and the Orchard Apartments to find recruits.

Curiously, Midway is one of the only planning groups in the city that will not be hosting an election in March. Due to unknown circumstances, no terms expire every third year, including 2015. But next year, eight of the 12 board members will be selected for three-year terms, and the other four slots are up for grabs in 2017. Nickel has said she doesn’t know why the ballot doesn’t follow a more-logical format of four positions per year.

Winter homeless shelter could close for good March 31

It could be the last year for the winter tent that has housed homeless veterans every winter since 1987 at 2801 ½ Sports Arena Blvd., Siegler said.

The shelter, which VVSD has been operating annually from Nov. 1 to March 31 in the parking lot of Goodwill Industries, could go away if Mayor Kevin Faulconer makes good on a pledge to replace it with a permanent, year-round shelter, Siegler said.

The facility holds 150 beds and usually operates at capacity. In his recent State of the City address, Faulconer said he wants to close down the tent and the city’s other winter homeless shelter in Barrio Logan, saying “San Diegans deserve more than a temporary tent when it’s cold outside.”

In its place, Faulconer has proposed a 350-bed indoor shelter, but offered up few other details in his address.  Siegler said VVSD is willing to continue operating the tent if the community supports it, but has no plans to run a permanent facility.

Zapf aide wants to get to know Midway

Ernie Navarro, aide to San Diego City Councilmember Lorie Zapf, introduced himself to the board. Navarro, who described himself as a 50-year city resident, confessed he has a lot to learn about Midway and encouraged citizens to contact him with their thoughts and issues at enavarro@sandiego.gov. Zapf last month began a four-year term representing Midway, Ocean Beach, the Peninsula and the rest of District 2.

The Midway Community Planning Group represents the Midway area and Pacific Highway Corridor and meets every third Wednesday of the month. The next meeting is Feb. 18 at 3 p.m. in Room 208 of the West City Campus of San Diego Community College, Continuing Education, 3249 Fordham St.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Goatskull February 1, 2015 at 2:39 pm

It’s about time. There is NO excuse what so ever to have let the abandoned building just sit there.

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Tony D Tony de Garate February 2, 2015 at 9:59 am

How long has that building been sitting there vacant? Couldn’t find anything definitive.

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