64% of San Diego Voters Passed 30-Foot Height Limit in 1972; Only 57% Voted for Measure E in 2020

by on August 17, 2022 · 60 comments

in Election, Ocean Beach

A Reality Check

Supporters of the elimination of the 30-foot height limit consistently point to the passage of Measure E in 2020 with 57% of San Diego voters supporting it. The same measure is again heading to the ballot this November after the original vote was invalidated by a judge, ruling the city needed to fulfill the required environmental impact study.

Wow, 57% — that’s a huge majority. The people have spoken! The will of the people demands that the height limit should be eliminated in the Midway area / Sports Arena zone. And they will speak again come the fall.

But wait.

Talk about the will of the people. In 1972, the people of San Diego spoke. And 64% of city voters passed the initiative. This oft-touted 57% pales in comparison. And it wasn’t just the beach and coastal areas that voted for the restriction — many neighborhoods went for it with the attitude, ‘it’s our beaches, too,’. Ocean Beach and Pacific Beach voted for it by 80%. (Go here for “The Origins of the 30-Foot Height Limit”)


{ 60 comments… read them below or add one }

Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 1:04 pm

Thanks Frank


Kathleen Blavatt August 17, 2022 at 1:23 pm

This NEW Measure is NOT the same as the last one! The ballot measure would lift the height limit to a 1,324-acre area of the Midway District, including the sports arena, some nearby city-owned land where officials say they envision high-rise housing, and a new entertainment district.
It will make a wall of highrises cutting off OB and Point Loma. Add that in with the old SPAWAR property, and MCRD, which may be in the works, and we are going to have a major mess!


Greg August 17, 2022 at 1:37 pm

Different time, different voting population, different measure in terms of scope. I don’t support Measure E but articles like this make our position look silly.


Frank Gormlie August 17, 2022 at 3:38 pm

It’s an important number (whether 63 or 64%) that you’re not going to hear from the media or city hall. Okay, you can ignore it, but don’t disparage the point.


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 1:53 pm

Frank, quick question – why are you saying 64%? According to the Registrar, it says “Yes” on Measure C in 1972 got 63.06% – https://www.sandiego.gov/sites/default/files/legacy/city-clerk/pdf/7079results.pdf

Also, 350,855 voted yes on Measure E in 2020 while 294,975 people voted in total on Measure C in 1972.

Additionally, 42% of San Diego’s population voted on Measure C while 47% of San Diego’s population voted on Measure E.

It’s just me but it doesn’t seem like an apples-to-apples comparison.

I remember someone saying “the Midway district is not near the coast, it is a good area for development, and it does make sense as the best use for the land to allow taller buildings so there is room for amenities. Prop 13 was passed 48 years ago and things have changed.” Seems like most people believe that?


Frank Gormlie August 17, 2022 at 2:33 pm

My info is from Alex Leondis, one of the organizers of the original measure; see this https://obrag.org/2012/11/celebrating-the-30-foot-height-limit-as-it-turns-40/


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 3:27 pm

Not to quibble but I personally would go with the City of San Diego’s official records if that was me. The link’s right there with the correct data.

63.06% is not 64% in my book.

Also, why does this really matter Frank? Anyone can spin this any way they’d like. Say, if the height limit removal side wins by 5% this time but 400,000 people vote yes (when only 186,007 voted “yes” on Measure C), couldn’t those supporting the height limit change say that it’s an astounding victory with more than double the number of people voting yes to remove the height limit than voted to keep it?

I’m just not sure what you’re after here with this piece.


Frank Gormlie August 17, 2022 at 3:41 pm

Okay, let’s forgive Alex Leondis who was 85 at time of his presentation 10 years ago, for nudging the number up 1.

And another response like the one I just gave: “It’s an important number (whether 63 or 64%) that you’re not going to hear from the media or city hall.” It puts the numbers game into perspective and gives our side a damn good argument.


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 3:53 pm

Oh I don’t blame Alex at all! Given the facts though, I’m wondering why you’re keeping it as the headline?

Also Frank there’s simply no comparison between 1972 and 2020 in terms of the measures. The only comparison is between 2020 and today’s electorate, voting on the same exact ballot measure that, if passed, would have the same exact outcome. Why do you think that voters who already proved that the city’s changed since 1972 would suddenly reverse course just two years later? What’s changed in San Diego?


Geoff Page August 17, 2022 at 4:16 pm

Hey Ellen, how about we even the playing field between 1972 and now and make the city gather the necessary ballot signatures the same way those volunteers did? It took a tremendous effort to get it on the ballot in 1972. This time it took a vote of nine people. The inequity is astounding.


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 5:00 pm

Hi Geoff, I’m not sure why that matters if at the end of the day the measure passes by a vote of the people, not by how it gets on the ballot? Didn’t the signature gatherers have to make a case to the entire city to pass Prop D when it was on the ballot? And why didn’t those same voices make a difference in 2020?

If at the end of the day most people currently believe that “the Midway district is not near the coast, it is a good area for development, and it does make sense as the best use for the land to allow taller buildings so there is room for amenities. Prop 13 was passed 48 years ago and things have changed”, who cares how it gest on there? I’m sorry, I’m just trying to figure this out too!


Geoff Page August 17, 2022 at 8:39 pm

Oh, it matters. Signature gathering spreads the word and makes people aware of what is happening. Just reading one morning that the nine people on city council voted to put it on the ballot means nothing to anyone.

Yes, the signature gatherers had to make the case and they did it in person and in meetings and in print. Those same voices are gone. Today, we have social media that is full of lies and distortions. Yea, it’s a different world today and the developers and politicians are taking full advantage of it.

Remember, we are not just talking about Midway as most people know it. MCRD is now officially part of the Midway district. Imagine all of MCRD built up like this.


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 9:06 pm

So if all 36K signatories in 1972 voted “yes” on Prop D, that would come out to 18% of the total “yes” votes (186,007). Doesn’t seem like a complete gamechanger when it came to the total since most people must have just voted for it without interacting with any signature gatherers.

Also, you don’t need to collect signatures to be talking to people in your neighborhood, correct? If talking to voters is so important, where were the concerned folks out pounding the pavement? How many doors did you, Frank, and folks like Kathleen knock on to get the word out? It’s pretty clear you all care deeply about this so I’m guessing you must have been out there. I must admit no one came to my door to talk about it. I can’t imagine that just posting on this website, which I like, is comparable to talking to people across the city on their front stoop. Or were you guys making phone calls instead?

Oh, and both Measure E and Prop D were city-wide so no one can say it’s tough to get out the word across the city as they had that in common.


Frank Gormlie August 17, 2022 at 4:59 pm

Don’t get bogged down. The point is – and we can extrapolate if we want – nearly two-thirds of the electorate passed the 30-foot height limit. Why not use 2/3rd’s of the current electorate numbers and see what we have.


Ellen Smith August 17, 2022 at 5:56 pm

I guess, but also what does it matter if it’s 50% + 1 vote? This is the majority rule on this and if more people in San Diego say they want the height limit raised in midway, who cares if it gets the same percentage as Prop D did (especially when way more people voted in 2020 to raise the height limit than voted in total on Prop D in 1972).

You may not like the result, but you’ll be in the minority, just like “no” on E was in the minority in 2020. I thought we liked democracy around here?


Frank Gormlie August 18, 2022 at 8:02 am

Ellen, I’m getting the feeling that you are actually looking forward to the new measure to eliminate the height limit in the Midway passing.


Ellen Smith August 18, 2022 at 9:18 am

I hope it’s OK to have a slightly differing opinion Frank! I mean as others have said the Midway district is not near the coast, it is a good area for development, and it does make sense as the best use for the land to allow taller buildings so there is room for amenities. Prop 13 was passed 48 years ago and things have changed. I’m just still perplexed why you’re against it. Do you like Midway as it is? Are you afraid it will impact your commute? Sorry if this comes off as brutish, I’m just getting into “posting” for the first time and am trying to determine why people are against the height limit raise in Midway. Please help me out!


Ellen Smith August 18, 2022 at 9:25 am

Also Frank, and I so hate to be a bother, but I’m still a little perplexed why you haven’t changed the title of this article to 63% yet, especially since you now clearly know what the results of the Prop D election were. I so appreciate this website’s dedication to the truth that it’s really concerning to see you knowingly keeping false information up. I hope it’s not just to make your argument look better. I would hope the OB Rag would be better than that, recognize a mistake and make the appropriate change (which I’ve see you folks do before). Again, sorry to be a stickler on this but I believe in the facts and I know you do too!


Frank Gormlie August 18, 2022 at 10:09 am

I think you’ve pointed out our “mistake” adequately. BTW, headlines cannot be changed once posted.


Frank Gormlie August 18, 2022 at 10:11 am

Affordable housing can be built in the Midway without changing the height limit. Knocking out the height limit there is just another blow to the Will of the People and will lead to more rationales to eliminate it in other places – which is going on right as we type (see what’s happening in PB).


Chris August 18, 2022 at 10:39 am

I too am a bit confused TBH. It seems the will of the people has changed from what it was in 1972. Is that not the case?


Chris August 18, 2022 at 10:49 am

57% isn’t 63% percent, but it still represents more than half the voters of Prop E as has already been pointed out, so obviously todays voters don’t want the same thing as voters from 1972.


Tyler August 18, 2022 at 2:03 pm

How is The Will of the People from 1972 more important than The Will of the People in 2020 or 2022?

The proposed Pacific Beach exemption is next to the 5…. in the new transit corridor. Hardly a removal of it for the actual community.


kh August 18, 2022 at 11:08 am

Thanks to Jen Campbell opening the door, they will be coming for the entire thing next. They already are at the state level. Had Campbell campaigned on attacking the 30ft limit, she wouldn’t have gotten anywhere near city hall.

Measure E, and the midway redevelopment have been pushed hand-in-hand, illegally, and still continue to be. The city is selecting redevelopment bids for city property that violated state law, and still violate the municipal code.

The city’s developer-friendly propaganda machine has linked both measures and convinced many it’s necessary to solve this slum of warehouses in the Midway district.


The midway community plan update already allowed for redevelopment and rezoning of Midway to provide all 6,500 new homes, without removing the height limit, and without anything resembling the current bids for redevelopment of the sports arena area.

Also the sports arena redevelopment, which they claim can’t be done without removing the height limit (false), is city property comprising only 4% of the midway planning area.

Voters should reject measure E, and if there is justification for replacement of the sports arena venue, draft a measure to allow that development within the envelope of the existing 65-ft structure.

And, at the very least, any plan on city property should include facilities to address the unhoused population in the area, rather than just shuffling them off to the neighboring zip codes.


Ellen Smith August 18, 2022 at 11:16 am

Thanks KH, I appreciate that, just three honest questions here –

Isn’t Jen Campbell, from what I’ve read, going to win her re-election pretty easily? If supporting the height limit raise was a career ender, wouldn’t her career have ended? And didn’t a recall fail as well?

Also, if all that’s true about what could be done in Midway now, why has it looked the same for as long as I’ve lived here? Other areas have gone through changes but Midway looks pretty much the same.

I’m just very confused why everyone on this website is fighting tooth and nail to keep a fairly blighted area blighted because they don’t want more homes to be built. Seems pretty selfish (I’m sorry if that comes off as rude, but I have to be honest).


Chris August 18, 2022 at 12:30 pm

Actually, being rude is what makes the internet fun. That’s why people post on it. Anyway, the fact is Jen Campbell campaigned on the promise to maintain the 30 foot height limit and once got elected did a 180. That’s why many are angry at her. Her own supporters are the first to acknowledge she pulled that stunt. I remember she made an appearance @ Inside Out in Hillcrest and fans of her were laughing out loud abut that very fact. I don’t know if that alone would answer your question about why her immediate change after her election didn’t end her career, but something things happen with no rhyme or reason why. That’s just the nature of politics. As to the 30 foot height limit in the Midway district, I personally can’t say one way or the other if ending it or keeping it in place would do anything to reduce housing costs. Plenty of high-rises have gone up in SD and have done nothing what so ever to help affordability. One thing that’s common knowledge is the fact than many of them are more than half empty and have stayed this way for quite a few years. Lack of occupancy is not driving prices down. You asked about blight. As you should know if you’ve been reading up on all the articles in the Rag, there is a sincere belief that bight can be improved without eliminating the 30 ft limit. Whether or not that can be accomplished remains to be seen since more likely than not it will in fact be eliminated. So will it’s elimination help with affordability? That also remains to be seen.


kh August 18, 2022 at 2:34 pm

Removing the height limit will not increase the allowable density. It will however, provide some expensive upper level condos with views that couldn’t be done before. And give more room for private amenities.

Overall, I believe it will result in increased cost of new units. Which is exactly why the builders are so eager for it.

And for Ellen, voting to keep the height limit is not a vote for blight, or even a vote against housing. Rather, it’s a vote to keep the newly allowed housing within the confines of the height limit and not give it away to builders and get us one step closer to dissolving the entire 30-ft overlay zone.


kh August 18, 2022 at 2:25 pm

The midway community plan was only updated a few years ago to change that base zoning. It would take a few years to implement in the muni code and to start seeing any redevelopment. The vast majority of it is privately owned, and they have existing investments and leaseholders to answer to. That will happen regardless of what happens on the city’s 4%. Yourself and others have wrongly equated the entire Midway area with what’s being proposed on those acres of city land.

As for Campbell, she received 29% of the vote in the primary, in a district that is 2-1 D vs. R. This is the worst turnout for an incumbent since 1962, and nearly the worst in recorded history of San Diego. Other incumbents received about 70%.

Despite this, and despite her backtracking on the 30ft limit, you are correct that she is the favorite to win in November. The viable democrats in the primary split the anti-Campbell votes, and Campbell’s political supporters cleverly funded the one unknown Republican in the race, successfully pushing her into 2nd place. They did this because they plan on campaigning on national party rhetoric rather than on the local issues she is supposed to be representing us on.

We’re seeing a similar trend nationally, where democrats are funding certain republican candidates in order to engineer the general election in their favor. It’s the disgusting influence of money on elections.


Gail Friedt August 18, 2022 at 2:59 pm

I just want to thank Ellen Smith for saying what 57% of the voters said by voting yes to Prop E in 2020. Yes it was the “will of the people”. Just as those who got their say in 1972.


Frank Gormlie August 18, 2022 at 3:52 pm

Gail and Ellen: this is not a forum for people who favor eliminating the height limit in the Midway or anywhere else west of 5. You already have the San Diego U-T and the Voice of San Diego, for starters.


KeepItLow August 18, 2022 at 3:59 pm

Thank you Frank!


Tyler August 19, 2022 at 5:41 am

I didn’t realize those of us with a different opinion are not welcome here Frank. Yeesh – getting more and more false progressive vibes from this site every day


Frank Gormlie August 19, 2022 at 9:29 am

Tyler, you’ve been commenting here for a few years, you’re a local and we’ve valued your views in the past. However, you’ve consistently taken a pro-nuke stance; that’s not where we’re at and you’ve known this – so we have disagreed. You take a broad brush with your “different opinion” swat. There’s lots of “different opinions,” so it depends on context. For instance, we wouldn’t post anything against a woman’s right to choose. Or pro-nuke.

The Rag has consistently been in favor of holding on to the 30-foot height limit — for over a decade — and has opposed over-development in the Midway at the expense of affordable housing. The Rag is not a forum for those who advocate the opposite. (And Tyler, it’s below you to take stupid pot shots at our writers.)


Greg August 19, 2022 at 7:14 am

I wasn’t aware this was no dissent zone. No opposing viewpoints here on the Rag! LOL


KeepItLow August 18, 2022 at 4:59 pm

Sorry, I hit “enter” too early. Thank you Frank… for proving what so many who read this blog already know – it’s not a place for a free exchange of ideas, but a sounding board for people who want to put this city in amber. I’ve seen comments posted that diverge from this NIMBY orthodoxy get deleted constantly, while others who believe that not a stone should change across San Diego have their out-of-touch rants left untouched. Frank clearly gets very touchy when anyone dares suggest things change around here.

If laws passed decades ago can’t be changed by people living in the present, we wouldn’t be a democracy. We’d still have people owned by others, women without voting rights, and LGBTQ couples without marriage equality. This proported “progressive” rag is truly the reactionary safe space for Boomers who bought in early and don’t want change. It’s funny to read people like Frank go after Republicans for being closed minded and unable to take in new ideas when you literally won’t let people gently suggest that maybe people under 68 (you’d have to be at least 68 to vote on Prop D in 1972) deserve a voice in what their city looks like in the comment sections without banning them. The irony of a generation that said “don’t trust anyone over 30” now doesn’t trust anyone under 70 (and doesn’t own a home).

Good thing that Frank, Geoff and the rest of these NIMBYs are in the minority (a 43% minority, to be clear) and will again be shown how outdated their ideas are come November.

I know this will get deleted quickly. I guess when the last place you’re in charge of is a lightly read blog, you gotta do everything you can to keep it pure and without competing thoughts. Your arguments can’t win anywhere but in a highly moderated comment section so congrats!


Mat Wahlstrom August 18, 2022 at 8:02 pm

LOL. You must have this confused with Twitter. Or can you name a local media outlet that lets anyone just post anything? Have fun with that straw man.


KeepItLow August 19, 2022 at 8:31 am

Sure Mat, moderation of content like racist remarks or profanity makes sense, but banning ideas you disagree with? Pretty pathetic if you ask me.

Also I’m still waiting for any of those comments above how the will of the people matters in 1972 but not 2020. Have yet to see Mat, Geoff or Frank answer that one!


Geoff Page August 18, 2022 at 6:14 pm

I just love this kind of commentary from someone who hides behind an alias. It’s so ,uh, freeing, isn’t it Keep? You are entitled to your own opinion, but it always amazes me how many people like you make comments disparaging The Rag and folks who write for it, making it clear that you actually do read the very thing you are disparaging.

The discussion went on for quite a few comments from both sides before Frank’s last post. Seems you’ve ignored all that completely.

And this NIMBY shit is getting very old. Why don’t you try thinking and be part of a discussion instead of resorting to name calling and not even being imaginative about it. Name calling from an anonymous person, gee, that makes an impression.


KeepItLow August 19, 2022 at 8:38 am

Why don’t you make the same comments about anonymity under every KH, Retired Botantis and literally every other anonymous poster on this blog Geoff?

If you’re not a NIMBY name one housing project you’ve supported. I’ve never seen it from you or anyone else writing for this rag so how is “not in my backyard” not an accurate description of the viewpoint held by the OB rag and the majority of your posters?

Also as I see above it looks like you ignored a number of questions that you were asked. Feel free to go respond to those, like why the will of the people in 1972 is more valid than the will of the people in 2020.


Frank Gormlie August 19, 2022 at 9:15 am

As to your 1st point, kh and retired botanist displayed their true identities to the editors/ administrators. You sent us a fake name email.


kh August 19, 2022 at 10:08 am

My name is Kevin Hastings and I sit on the OB Planning Board and attend CPC meetings and council meetings on housing and other issues. I also have plenty of opinions on things posted here, including disagreements with Frank and other authors.

Your turn. Maybe you could start over with some reasoned points rather than name calling and insults.


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 1:13 pm

And, I would add, in Kevin’s defense, that he makes an attempt to keep his role on the planning board out of his comments by using just those initials. As a former planning board member, I think this is a reasonable precaution to make sure people don’t think he is speaking for the OB board.


Mat Wahlstrom August 19, 2022 at 12:31 pm

Demanding others respond to your allegations or else they’re ‘proving you right’ may have still worked in 2018 but people nowadays recognize sealioning. https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/sealioning-internet-trolling

Here, let’s demonstrate: It’s been pointed out here multiple times already that the initiative for the coastal height limit in 1972 came from citizens, who organized to get it on the ballot. The repeal was a back-room deal with developers and politicians who put it on the 2020 ballot. That’s why the judge said the thresholds matter and that’s why it was struck down and that’s why they’re having to try again. Now, will you admit that answers your question?


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 12:55 pm

The reason I don’t say the same things about those others is because they participate in reasonable discussions and do not resort to calling people names as a fall back. I have disagreed with kh, and he with me, but it has been respectful. You want to challenge me, I want to know who you are. There is a boatload of people who ghost comments for other people and many in this city’s establishment don’t care for The Rag. So, be brave and show yourself.


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 1:09 pm

As for housing projects, I’m a believer in letting local communities opine and decide about projects in their neighborhoods. There are few places for housing projects where I live. The local planning board has approved some small projects that have come before it over the years. I’ve been writing about the planning boards for years now, have a look and you’ll see what we have written about approved projects here in Thew Rag.


Gail Friedt August 18, 2022 at 10:43 pm

@Frank Gromlie – thank you for saying out loud exactly what many have known. The obrag is a forum, mostly for men on a certain age, to pontificate and pat each other on the back for their opinions.

And, if you want to call out people for being anonymous, I’d appreciate “kh” using his/her full name.

Thank you for the clarification. I’ll stick to Twitter.


Mat Wahlstrom August 18, 2022 at 11:15 pm

“Men on a certain age”? Clearly you still feel entitled to engage in discrimination and excuse your vile behavior as being in service to the YIMBY agenda.

And “stick to Twitter”? Whatever will you talk about? https://twitter.com/GailFriedt/status/1557454569675771904

Touch grass.


Gail Friedt August 19, 2022 at 12:44 am

@Mat Wahlstrom- I’m of a certain age too (60) so can certainly say that. And, as for being “vile”, you’re the reason 3 very articulate and civic minded members of Uptown Planners immediately resigned. Get over yourself already. Not surprised you feel the need to stalk me on twitter and then post a link. Didn’t you dox someone too? let me see if I can find those resignation letters and post the link to those too.


Chris August 19, 2022 at 9:59 am

60?? Holy crap (if you don’t mind my saying) you sure don’t look it. And I just turned 61 yesterday.


Mat Wahlstrom August 19, 2022 at 12:01 pm

Get over yourself, Gail. I found your post by searching for who shared a link to my article. It’s just more evidence of your creep-posting about me behind my back without tagging me. Oh, that’s right — you blocked me on Twitter so you can’t tag me, even though I’ve never posted anything about you. Way to prove how strong and independent you are.

I really don’t have time to waste on hypocrites and liars and bigots — especially when they’re all the same person.


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 1:00 pm

Yea, really a brave lady. She blocked me too. It amazes me how cowardly a whole group of people are like anemones, one touch and they disappear into their hole.


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 12:57 pm

Do you have any idea of the vitriol that would come our way if we ever made a statement like “women of a certain age,” like you?

You want to know who kh is, ask him.


Chris August 19, 2022 at 10:10 am

In the end it really doesn’t matter between 63/64 percent in 1972 and 57 percent in 2020 to now. 57 percent is still the majority and when this goes back on the ballot in November I’m pretty sure most voters again will vote to have it removed. So I think it’s safe to say the height limit in the midway area is on it’s way out, good or bad. With that in mind, what is the best way to make sure the housing that goes in is affordable? What will be the best way to utilize the lack of a hight limited to benefit most San Diegans?


Chris August 19, 2022 at 12:19 pm

NIMBY vs YIMBY is more fun that tastes great vs less filling.


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 1:03 pm

Honestly, Chris, it is more like YIMBY – which should really be YIYBY – actively attacking people they label as NIMBY. See, when you put a label on a human being, they are no longer perceived as another human being. Much easier to throw off all moral restraints.


Chris August 19, 2022 at 2:03 pm

You’re not wrong Geoff, but it’s just the nature of heated internet arguments. And we are all guilty of doing that to some degree.


retired botanist August 19, 2022 at 3:06 pm

Oh, for Pete’s sake! If it placates anyone, my name is Kris. Does that help? Does it make my comments more relevant? (And yes, the Rag folks, Geoff, Frank, as well as other locals, know exactly who I am).
1st, a majority rule in 2020 is just as valid as one in 1972. Regardless of the # of people, whether its 51% or 63%, how it got on the ballot, etc. It is the majority. Period. Whether we like it or not.
2nd, imo, this is a disappointing outcome. To those who say we’re NIMBYs, please find a better way to rebut the argument. NIMBY is so stale and offers nothing constructive. Fwiw, this “backyard” (the coastline) is everyone’s backyard, not just people >65 that happen to live in OB or PB, etc.
3rd, the real nexus of the opposition is that elimination of the height limit in the Midway area adds ZERO to the current problem solving, and lays the groundwork for a new bucketload of problems down the road. As KH pointed out, this neglected/’blighted’ area can still be redeveloped and face-lifted, and can still provide affordable housing without making that exemption. The exemption will undoubtedly be the edge of the wedge. We all know, or at least those of us who are now seemingly classified as fossils, how that edge works:
Years ago when Petco Park was proposed (yes, of course I voted for the library…) it promised all sorts of ‘rebates’ for the downtown area, all kinds of low-income housing, revitalization, etc. Yet, in no time at all the upper story condos were being rented by the DAY for exclusive sport viewing, the downtown mall retailers lost tons of business b/c Petco park people were taking up all the parking spaces, and, near as I can tell, it did ZERO for low income housing. Providing expensive, high-rise dwellings in the Midway will ultimately result in the same scenario: sad, squalid conditions on the ground, and elite entitled conditions in the ‘sky’.
As another example of the wedge edge, look at SeaWorld. Started out as a low-on-the-horizon marine park with an “educational” mission statement, right? Now its just an entertainment atrocity that charges people (who can afford it) $100s of dollars to go gawk at cruelly incarcerated animals and ride roller coasters. And it continues to spread like slime over the acreage, including its pollution of Mission Bay.
If there is anything positive to be said about the ‘fossils’ who were around for the 1972 voting, it is (at least) the fact that they have seen many proposals, just like the Midway development plan, that take advantage of City space, pitch glossy solutions, and end up wallet-stuffing the pockets of those least deserving.
That’s my 2 cents, bring on the bashers, haha! ?


Geoff Page August 19, 2022 at 3:40 pm

Right on, retired! For you kids out there, that means “good job.”


LORI SALDANA August 19, 2022 at 3:53 pm

To view the actual precinct vote counts from 1972 to see how many people supported this in various communities visit: https://www.sdvote.com/content/dam/rov/en/archive/197211CV.pdf

It’s not easy to count- it’s an image of an old paper tally sheet.

Of note: The final tally on the city’s website shows 186,007/63.06% YES vs 108,968/36.94% NO- the SECOND HIGHEST vote count of ALL ballot measures that year.

Highest: Building “low rent” apartments for older adults:
207,263/70.49% YES vs. 86,752/29.51 NO)

This may explain why so many current ballot measures add language about similar “affordable housing” to attract support.


Debbie August 19, 2022 at 4:47 pm

Ms. Saldana, anyone who did not vote for you should have their head examined!


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