Rally Today to Celebrate 50th Anniversary of 30-Foot Height Limit and to Say ‘No’ to Measure C — Thurs., Oct. 6

by on October 5, 2022 · 23 comments

in Election, Ocean Beach

Join neighbors and other residents today, Thursday, October 6 at the OB Pier to both celebrate the 50th anniversary of the 30-foot height limit and to say “No” to Measure C.

At 11 am, there will be a rally and press conference by the new group Keep the Coast 30.

They are asking supporters to bring signs and spirit and join the merry-making and celebration.

Keep the Coast 30 plans on a series of celebrations and press conferences throughout October to remind San Diegans about the historic vote taken a half century ago that established the 30-foot height limit west of I-5. In November of 1972, 63% of voters passed the Citizens’ Initiative, placed on the ballot by a group of hard-working volunteers who collected 36,000 signatures.

Today, Measure C is the greatest threat to the height limit in 50 years. If passed, it will eliminate the 30-foot height limit throughout the entire Midway planning district. (Not just the Sports Arena area.)

In just 3 weeks time, Keep the Coast 30 has organized the events on Thursday, set up a website, established a GoFundMe Page, is sponsoring a sign making contest and has been getting the word out.

If interested in joining the group, contact Frank at obragblog@gmail.com or the group at keepthecoast30.org

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Tanner October 5, 2022 at 3:44 pm

I LOVE the “You Belong Here” slogan. It’s a perfect insult on top of injury for this exclusionary, anti-housing effort.


Frank Gormlie October 5, 2022 at 5:46 pm

Tanner, thanks for your love. It appears you’ve bought into the argument that those who want to protect the coast are anti-housing, which can’t be further from the truth. And we’re trying to make it more inclusionary but preventing over-development where units will start at $1M.


Frances O'Neill Zimmerman October 6, 2022 at 2:59 pm

Excellent point, Frank. We should not be conflating the near-mythic but admirable notion of “building affordable housing” with helter-skelter building anything along our one-and-only coast.

As a cautionary tale, I encourage readers to look at today’s Los Angeles Times Page One story about “Cape Coral” that was just destroyed by Hurricane Ian. In the 1960’s, when there was no State of Florida planning or zoning, out-of-state hustler/developers reshaped what had been a protective barrier coastal wetland into a coastal resort of 30,000+ modest homes sitting five feet or less under-sea-level. This entire town was just destroyed in the wake of Hurricane Ian.

Apparently Cape Coral is featured in a book written by Jason Vuic called “The Swamp Peddlers: How Lot Sellers, Land Scammers, and Retirees Built Modern Florida and Transformed the American Dream.”

We need to wake up and fight back against the pols, the peddlers and the high-rise scammers. Protect the 30-foot height limit in the coastal zone. Vote No on Prop C.


kh October 7, 2022 at 1:30 pm

Cape Coral was not destroyed. There was significant damage from storm surge and wind, as they are on the coast and directly in the storms path, but water service has been restored and most of the power.

Certainly it is a case of significant terraforming, but it’s almost entirely low rise construction.


Chris October 5, 2022 at 6:45 pm

Do you feel insulted lol?


Mat Wahlstrom October 5, 2022 at 8:00 pm

Triggered much?


kh October 7, 2022 at 1:22 pm

Please do independent research before repeating the lies of developer lobbyists.

The Midway community plan update 4 years ago already prescribed the same number of new housing units while preserving the 30ft height limit. Measure C ensures those new housing units will be more expensive and more lucrative.


Tanner October 7, 2022 at 3:30 pm

Thanks for the replies, folks. I appreciate the thoughtful ones. The Community Plan details a goal. It takes real changes to actually provide that housing. Sounds like y’all already got your little slice of heaven. Good for you. I was lucky enough to live in OB as a renter while attending UCSD 20 years ago. Would love to have an opportunity to move back some day … but we’d need to build some new housing. The 30′ height limit is a huge barrier to those goals and providing new housing opportunities. I understand why some may want to keep it that way. Cheers.


UNWASHEDwalmartTHONG October 5, 2022 at 10:42 pm

Rally is at OB Pier at 11 a.m. Thursday October 6, right?


Mat Wahlstrom October 5, 2022 at 11:07 pm

Yep! Be there or be square!


Frank Gormlie October 6, 2022 at 8:49 am

Join neighbors, the OB Rag, the PL-OB Democratic Club and others for a rally TODAY at 11 at the Pier.


Greg October 6, 2022 at 10:05 am

There are so many ways we can increase supply of housing using already existing unit stock but that’s an unspoken third rail because YIMBY’s only support policies that directly benefit existing landowners and large capital organizations.


Gregg g Sullivan October 7, 2022 at 2:30 pm

What’s your plan? The rental vacancy rate in the first quarter of 2022 was 5.8% — higher than the historical low of 5.0% recorded prior to 1985. However, it was lower than the quarterly rental vacancy rate estimate at any point during the 35-year period from 1985 through 2019.

This seems low to me. I Googled this info because you make it sound like there is plenty of existing stock which I found hard to believe. Another person made a comment that half of the rental apartments are sitting vacant which I also find hard to believe.


Chris October 7, 2022 at 8:11 pm

“Another person made a comment that half of the rental apartments are sitting vacant which I also find hard to believe.”

That person might have been me but I never said half, as in half the rental units in the city. What I DID say is there are a significant # of multi family units are sitting more than empty because they are not attracting new residents who can afford or are willing to pay that high a price for the space they get. That is something you do NOT find hard to believe and if you say otherwise you are being dishonest. Many owners and management companies are not willing to lower prices to attract residents, even if it means losing money. That’s just plain common knowledge.


Gregg Sullivan October 8, 2022 at 8:12 am

What’s does “more than empty” mean? It’s sounds like you’re saying more are unoccupied than occupied. Your comment about landlords not willing to lower the prices has nothing to do with my comment. You misunderstand.

At a 5.8% vacancy rate there isn’t enough existing housing stock to meet demand for lower and middle income housing, even if landlords were willing to lower their prices. What I meant was, which I did not make clear, we need to build more housing to fill these needs.


Chris October 8, 2022 at 7:27 pm

A significant number of multi family units are more than half unoccupied. Particularly in parts of downtown and Bankers Hill.


Greg October 9, 2022 at 8:43 am

– Entities can own more than one unit without escalating penalty. There should be increased financial disincentive to owning more than one unit of housing.
– AirBnB exists, has no cap on owner-occupied rentals.
– There is no vacancy tax.

These policies should be enacted FIRST before giving large handouts to existing landowners and developers. We may need to do that regardless, but let’s make housing for housing people!


kh October 10, 2022 at 9:35 am

I have one home and one rental unit (long term). I get more tax breaks on the rental than my own home!

That’s just one part of what’s wrong with our housing market. We should not be incentivizing rental/investment housing. There is enough incentive already. That’s a recipe for a lifetime of paying market rate rent. We need some equity-sharing options to enable more first-time home owners a foot in the door.


Frank Gormlie October 6, 2022 at 6:13 pm

We had a great turnout of residents and 3 cameras were there, Fox5, KUSI and our own Charles Landon. The Rag will be posting the full press conference, but here’s Fox5: https://fox5sandiego.com/news/local-news/voters-battle-over-coastal-height-limit-measure-in-midway-district/


Debbie October 7, 2022 at 4:47 am

What is District 2 candidate Mandy Havlik’s position on the height limit? Was she there?

Thank you to all those that could be there!


Mat Wahlstrom October 7, 2022 at 11:47 am

Yes, Mandy was there, and one of the main speakers in support of No on Measure C.


Debbie October 7, 2022 at 1:20 pm

Thank you, now I know who to vote for!


Debbie October 8, 2022 at 4:22 pm

Oops I guess I meant to ask what Linda Lukac’s position is on the height limit since she is the candidate against Campbell.


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