Circulate San Diego’s Undue Influence at City Hall and Lobbying for Legislation Violate Non-Profit Rules

by on May 31, 2023 · 28 comments

in Ocean Beach, San Diego

By Geoff Page

This piece is an examination of a “non-profit” organization named Circulate San Diego, referred to as CSD here. It claims to be a nonprofit, public benefit corporation doing good for the community by advocating for “active transportation” and walkable neighborhoods.

Research into CSD’s affairs clearly shows a very close association with the San Diego development industry, which is gleefully in lock step with the YIMBY urbanists because they advocate building with no restrictions. CSD is also in lockstep with the current crop of politicians in city hall and it exercises an outsized influence in the affairs of this city.

The problem is that CSD’s operations appear to potentially violate IRS rules governing a tax-exempt organization and California rules for a nonprofit corporation. CSD looks like it’s a political instrument dedicated to helping the development industry and the political career of its CEO, Colin Parent, who is currently running for a seat in the California assembly.

What is a 501(c)(3)?

Circulate San Diego is a California 501(c)(3) nonprofit, public benefit corporation registered as WalkSanDiego. There are three parts to that designation. The numbering 501(c)(3) comes from the IRS. A corporation with that designation is exempt from Federal taxes and probably state taxes as well.

The nonprofit designation comes from the state. It means what it says, there are no stockholders and no dividends are paid to anyone. The public benefit designation is one of three types of nonprofits in California. They are public benefit, mutual benefit, and religious.

The public benefit designation means the corporation was formed for public or charitable good. A mutual benefit nonprofit is like the Ocean Beach Mainstreet Association, which is organized to help their particular group. Religious speaks for itself.

As can be expected, there are rules a 501(c)(3) corporation must follow in order to be tax exempt. Here is a description of tax-exempt activities from the IRS:

The exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3) are charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering national or international amateur sports competition, and preventing cruelty to children or animals. The term charitable is used in its generally accepted legal sense and includes relief of the poor, the distressed, or the underprivileged; advancement of religion; advancement of education or science; erecting or maintaining public buildings, monuments, or works; lessening the burdens of government; lessening neighborhood tensions; eliminating prejudice and discrimination; defending human and civil rights secured by law; and combating community deterioration and juvenile delinquency.

Circulate San Diego claims it is exempt under the very vague “advancement of education or science” activity.

Colin Parent


A corporation’s history can be viewed on the California Secretary of State’s website. The website has no records for a corporation named Circulate San Diego.

In his May 7, 2023, story about Colin Parent, the Union Tribune’s Jeff Macdonald stated that Circulate San Diego was created in 2014 by merging two non-profits, Walk San Diego and Move San Diego.

Non-profit corporations are required to post their financial records for public viewing. On CSD’s website are IRS 990 forms 2017 to 2021. The latest form, from 2021 , has “WalkSanDiego” – just like that, no spaces – in the name block. The name Circulate San Diego is not in the document at all. A website is listed on the Form as “WALKSANDIEGO.ORG. That web address goes to a website that appears to be all in Japanese with cartoon characters.

WalkSanDiego and Move San Diego do, however, appear on the Secretary of State website.


  • 11-15-02 – WalkSanDiego Articles of Incorporation – No statement of purpose. Articles state, “C. No substantial part of the activities of this Corporation shall consist of carrying on propaganda or otherwise attempting to influence legislation…”\
  • 3-5-14 – Merger of WalkSanDiego and Move San Diego. WalkSanDiego became the “Surviving Corporation” and Move San Diego became the “Merging Corporation.” The signatures for WalkSanDiego were from Andy Hamilton, president, and Jeff Barfield, secretary. Signing for Move San Diego were Stephen Hasse, president, and Kathy Breedlove, secretary. Parent’s name is not in the document. Parent’s name does not show on CSD tax forms until 2018.\
  • 9-9-20 – Corporation Statement of Information for WalkSanDiego names Parent as the CEO. Parent is also listed as the Agent for Service of Process. Clint Daniels is named as the secretary and Clarissa Falcon is name as the CFO.\
  • 3-2-22 – Corporation Statement of Information shows officer changes. Parent is now listed as the CEO and the CFO as well as the Agent for Service of Process. Clarissa Falcon is named as secretary, and Clint Daniels’s name does not appear.

A review of the WalkSanDiego names:

  • Andy Hamilton – On LinkedIn, Hamilton shows he is a board Vice-Chair for Circulate San Diego and that he has been with the group for 29 years and five months, since 1994. His profile also listed that he was president of WALKSANDIEGO for 15 years and 3 months from 1998 to 2014. He is not currently listed on the CSD site. The dates seem to indicate that CSD and WALKSANDIEGO existed as something before incorporation. As seen previously, WALKSANDIEGO was not incorporated until November 2002.
  • Jeff Barfield – Planner for Michael Baker International, an international firm based in Pittsburg that provides engineering and consulting services, including design, planning, architectural, environmental, construction and program management.
  • Clint Daniels – current board member of CSD. Transportation and Urban Data Analyst, Current VP of Modeling & Forecasting at Motionworks.
  • Clarissa Falcon – Currently a California Transportation Commissioner. She is a Principal Consultant for Falcon Strategies, a lobbying firm, where she has been for more than 13 years.

Move San Diego

  • 1-13-04 – Articles of Incorporation – “The specific purpose of the Corporation is to encourage improvements in the human and natural environment by examining, discussing and promoting sustainable transportation programs that would decrease dependence on the automobile in the San Diego region;”
  • 4-27-10 – Statement of Information – Address 437 J St., Ste 215. CEO Marcela Escobar-Eck, Aaron Contorer, secretary, both in Liberty Station and Jay Corrales, CFO in Carlsbad.  The agent is Elyse W. Lowe.
  • 1-5-12 – Statement of Information – CEO changed to Stephen Hasse, secretary changed to Keely Halsey, and CFO is changed to Sarah Kruer Jager. Lowe was still the agent.
  • 3-5-14 – Merger – Secretary changed again to Kathy Breedlove

A review of Move San Diego names:

  • Marcela Escobar-Eck – Atlantis Group. Once headed the City of San Diego Development Services Department. Was infamous for promoting developers and quashing public protest. Left the city under a cloud for approving the to-tall Sunroad Project in Kearny Mesa where an entire floor had to be removed for violating FAA requirements.  Name a controversial project in San Diego and Escobar-Ecks name will probably come up. The latest was One Paseo in Carmel Valley. She was in lock step with McMillin developing Liberty Station, while she was with the city.
  • Aaron Contorer – Mostly a tech company person but also has his own Contorer Foundation, a nonprofit funding organization. In Charge of strategy and most grant making. Not a corporation.
  • Jay Corrales – Partner, Turner Real estate at the time.
  • Elyse W. Lowe – Former Executive Director of WalkSanDiego, currently Director of the San Diego Development Services Department. Went into city government eight months after the merger occurred as the Deputy Director of the DSD. LinkedIn showed no relevant experience to head a department like the DSD.
  • Stephen Hasse – Was a senior vice president for residential developer Baldwin and Sons.
  • Keely Halsey – – Now Assistant Director DSD – land use attorney for private firm Opper & Varco LLP when her name first appeared on the 1-5-12 Statement of Information. Four months later she went to work as a Deputy District Attorney.
  • Sarah Kruer Jager – Partner in the Monarch Group private real estate investment and development firm.
  • Kathy Breedlove – Land Use Attorney – Planning, Entitlements, real estate development.

Clearly, Move San Diego had the heavy hitters. The purpose of the merger is unclear. What is clear is that Move San Diego also had all the money when the merger occurred.


A review of financial records for CSD from 2013 to 2017: looking at 2013, the year before the merger, the “contributions, gifts, and grants” total was $600,882 and the “program service revenue” was only $69,714. The merger was in 2014 and the figures completely, and inexplicably, flipped.

The program service revenue increased tenfold in 2014 to $629,496 and the contributions halved. By 2017, contributions had dwindled to $203,888, but program service revenue stayed steady at $626,608. Without the details for these numbers, it appears that the contributions may have magically been reclassified as “program service revenue.”

CSD’s 2021 IRS Form 990 shows these two categories of income, “Contributions and Grants” and “Consulting,” a different way of saying “program service revenue.” Here is the breakdown from the 2021 form:

  • $239,130 – contributions and grants
    • $103,202 – Fundraising events
    • $135,928 – all other contributions, gifts, grants
  • $767,905 – Program service revenue (FORM 199, PART II, LINE 7 OTHER INCOME)
    • $672,238 – Consulting
    • $95,667 – Grants
  •  $1,022,620 – Total income

Unfortunately, no detail is provided for the income in any of the tax documents available. Repeated requests for this detail from Colin Parent have been ignored.

Contributions and grants income would be normal for any nonprofit. Why Parent will not reveal who the donors are is a mystery. More interesting, however, is the big number for “Program service revenue.” Apparently, nonprofits can make money.

In a piece by a law firm named Adler& Colvin ( this is explained:

Operating charities, hoping to rely less on private foundation grants and government funding, have been actively looking for ways to ensure their own survival through income-generating activities. Sometimes organizations look to become self-sufficient from the income generated from their own core nonprofit activities, a phenomenon that some refer to as social entrepreneurship.

The less the activity looks and feels like a traditional charitable endeavor, the more scrutiny the IRS will apply.

Because Parent refuses to provide the detail for that large “Consulting” number, it is not possible to tell if “the activity looks and feels like a traditional charitable endeavor.”  Who is CSD working for to earn that much in a single year and what does the work consist of?

What the tax form does not show is that CSD sells six different levels of individual membership from $25 to $1,000 on its website. CSD also sells six levels of corporate membership from $1,000 to $10,000. The fee levels are called donations but that is a misnomer as each level comes with different levels of specific benefits. A donation, by its very nature, is not meant to be a quid pro quo.

Circulate also sells “Mobility Certifications that cost between $3,500 and $15,000. The costs are described as fees, not donations.  Here is how CSD describes its certifications on its website:

The Circulate Mobility Certification provides recognition and support for transit-oriented, smart growth projects in the San Diego region.

Projects applications are reviewed by the Circulate Mobility Certification panel, a volunteer committee with expertise in the areas of development, active transportation, and neighborhood design. The review committee independently evaluates each project on the basis of an objective application criteria.

Except for limited circumstances, projects must pay an application fee to be considered for certification. The application is risk-free, and projects with unsuccessful applications are kept confidential.

This is a service aimed directly at developers who use the certifications as a badge of mobility excellence for their projects. It is very interesting that CSD keeps secret the names of projects that fail its examination secret.  If this truly is a public benefit corporation, would it not be a public benefit to identify projects that do not meet the mobility certification standards?

With no detail on this large consulting number, it is very possible that this revenue is a disguise for what are really donations, in the form of “work,” to help CSD further the desires of certain politicians and further the cause of development. And to further Parent’s political career.

The 2021 Form 990 shows that Parent is paid a salary of $134,167 plus $6,766 in benefits. The first time Parent shows on the tax forms is in 2018. His salary was $109,904 plus $3,649 in benefits. That is a 22% increase in salary and an 85% increase in benefits in five years.

IRS Rules – where CSD goes off the rails

According to the IRS:

To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.

The important part of that quote is the wording about not being an “action organization” and not attempting to “influence legislation.” Remember that WalkSanDiego’s Articles of Incorporation on 2002 also stated:

WalkSanDiego Articles of Incorporation – No statement of purpose. Articles state, “C. No substantial part of the activities of this Corporation shall consist of carrying on propaganda or otherwise attempting to influence legislation…“

CSD has clearly violated that stated purpose and it is an action organization that is constantly trying to influence legislation.

The IRS continued with:

In general, no organization may qualify for section 501(c)(3) status if a substantial part of its activities is attempting to influence legislation (commonly known as lobbying).  A 501(c)(3) organization may engage in some lobbying, but too much lobbying activity risks loss of tax-exempt status.

“WalkSanDiego dba Circulate San Diego” is listed as a registered lobbyist on the City of San Diego’s registry of lobbyists. Since 2018, the city site shows 57 instances of lobbying by CSD.

The IRS went on to describe what “legislation” means:

Legislation includes action by Congress, any state legislature, any local council, or similar governing body, with respect to acts, bills, resolutions, or similar items (such as legislative confirmation of appointive office), or by the public in referendum, ballot initiative, constitutional amendment, or similar procedure.

Attempting to influence state and local legislation is a major activity for CSD. A quick visit to the CSD website provides all the examples needed. Here are a few titles from a large collection of CSD’s “Policy Letters.”

  • Coalition Letter: YIMBY Act, May 19, 2023, – Circulate submitted a letter reaffirming our support for the Yes in My Backyard (YIMBY) Act in the 118th Congress.
  • Letter: Support for SB 405 – Housing Elements, April 17, 2023 – Circulate submitted a letter of support for SB 405. This bill will help make housing elements more reliable by requiring planning…\
  • Letter: Support for SB 713 – Density Bonus, April 17, 2023 – Circulate submitted a letter in support of SB 713, which would codify an opinion by the department of housing and…
  • Letter: Request for Governor’s Signature on AB 2097, September 21, 2022 – Circulate sent a letter requesting that Governor Gavin Newsom sign AB 2097 (Friedman). This bill would prohibit local governments from…

The IRS further stated:

An organization will be regarded as attempting to influence legislation if it contacts, or urges the public to contact, members or employees of a legislative body for the purpose of proposing, supporting, or opposing legislation, or if the organization advocates the adoption or rejection of legislation.

CSD put out a document titled “Circulate Endorses San Diego Measures B, C, and D.” At the bottom of the document was “Election day is November 8, 2022. Make sure that you are registered to vote, and vote yes on measures B, C, and D.”

Community Planning Group Reform Influence

There is little doubt that CSD is operating far beyond the boundaries of how a 501(c)(3) is supposed to operate. Another example is Community Planning Group (CPG) reform.

CSD has been heavily involved in the effort to “reform” community planning groups to the extent that CSD wrote one third of the original CPG reform recommendations. The following is from a Union Tribune article September 13, 2022.

“Mid-City CAN Joins Coalition, Supports LaCava on Proposed Reforms to CPGs, posted by RON SANCHEZ

San Diego City Council voted 6-1 on Tuesday to adopt reforms to Community Planning Groups put forward by Councilmember Joe LaCava. The reforms will encourage diversity within the groups, prohibit some antidemocratic practices, and bring them into compliance with the City Charter.

The [CPG] reforms are a major breakthrough after of years of advocacy led by Circulate San Diego.”

The last sentence attests to CSD’s CPG reform involvement. CSD has made no secret of its belief that community planning groups are a hindrance to achieving CSD’s and the “mobility” community’s goals.

According to the IRS, a 501(c)(3) charity may not support or oppose candidates for public office. The IRS considers this prohibition to be absolute. CSD seems to be careful about making outright endorsements for candidates. But, it still happens. This taken from Marni von Wilpert’s announcement as a candidate for the City Council District 5 seat.

Deputy City Attorney Marni von Wilpert announced her candidacy Tuesday for the San Diego City Council District 5 seat. Von Wilpert burnished her announcement with endorsements from San Diego City Council members Barbara Bry and Jennifer Campbell, former San Diego City Councilwoman Marti Emerald, Carlsbad City Councilwoman Cori Schumacher and La Mesa City Councilman and Circulate San Diego Executive Director Colin Parent.

And the question that should be asked is this, can support for a politician or politicians come in the form of a blanket endorsement and vigorous promotion of their policies? Of course, it can.

A February 27, 2023, Union Tribune story titled “San Diego Hopes New Housing Policies Boost Integration” described CSD as follows and included a quote from CSD:

Circulate San Diego, a housing and transit advocacy group, praised the city for adding the high-opportunity zones to the policy.

“Fair housing is all about undoing the segregation that was created by government policies and discrimination in the past,” said Jesse O’Sullivan, the organization’s policy counsel. “Residential segregation by race and income has historically been enforced by exclusionary zoning.”

How does being “a housing and transit advocacy group,” or any of what has been described here, comport with what CSD stated on its 2021 Form 990 “TO CREATE EXCELLENT MOBILITY CHOICES AND VIBRANT, HEALTHY NEIGHBORHOODS.”

Looking at additional names associated with CSD currently or at one time, shows a list of people involved with the development industry.

  • Gary London, president of strategic consulting firm London Group Realty Advisors. London has also taught real estate development at the University of California San Diego and the University of Arizona. London previously worked for Price Waterhouse as a Western Region director.
  • Humberto Peraza – CEO Counter Point Government Relations
  • John Ponder – Partner in law firm Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP. Represents clients in real estate development.
  • David Gatzke – Senior Director of Development H.G. Fenton Company
  • Jim Waring – Former City of San Diego official who resigned over the Sunroad fiasco. Appears to be working in South Carolina.
  • Craig Benedetto – California Strategies, LLC, full-service public affairs consulting firm dedicated to successfully navigating clients through the myriad pathways of California’s political, legislative, regulatory, and media environments. Partner is Ben Haddad former Chief of Staff for Susan Golding.
  • Sherry Ryan – CR Associates, planning and design consulting firm\
  • David deKozan – Vice President, Business Development, NAM West at Cubic Transportation Systems, Inc.
  • Madeleine Baudoin Ghorashi – Director of Communications for City Councilmember Joe LaCava
  • Jennifer Davies – Director of External Affairs and Cultural Tourism at San Diego Tourism Authority
  • David Alvarez – Assemblymember District 80

CSD’s undue influence in city hall and its attempts to influence legislation that developers want passed are clear violations of what CSD states its purpose is. CSD is violating the rules of a non-profit corporation, something the IRS and California need to be made aware of.

Anyone considering voting for Parent in his run for an assembly seat, needs to first consider how he has managed this organization.

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

DiegoK May 31, 2023 at 2:05 pm

Thanks Geoff for your insightful research. This is a true public service.

This reminds me of the tobacco and the fossil fuels industries that create bogus organizations with benign names, to give themselves a veneer of legitimacy.

The development industry is alive and thriving in San Diego. I’m impressed at how they can shift with the changing political winds – Republicans or Democrats, it doesn’t matter to them.


LBruce May 31, 2023 at 8:11 pm

I agree with you 100%. I used to rail against Pete Wilson and his ilk being in bed with developers. Now I understand all too well that real estate development industry representatives are in our elected officials’ offices each and every day, regardless of those electeds’ party-affiliation, asking about the spouse, the dog, the vacation, etc. – BUILDING RELATIONSHIPS that serve their development interests all too well. Democrats have proven just as susceptible to their charms. To my deep disappointment and chagrin.


Geoff Page May 31, 2023 at 9:07 pm

“Just as susceptible to their charms” and their charms are money and help wit the next step up.


Chris June 1, 2023 at 1:33 pm

The major difference between Pete Wilson’s time and now is in Pete’s time it was about spread out single family homes where is now it’s about high dense multi family housing and making cities less car dependent. The developers themselves don’t care, they just want to do what will make them money but the supporters of dense housing want to make cities less car dependent and seem to belive an explosion of these kinds of housing units will drive down the cost. I don’t think that will be the end result but that does seem to be the belief.


Geoff Page May 31, 2023 at 9:05 pm

Thanks, DiegoK. You said it well, “The development industry is alive and thriving in San Diego.”


Vern May 31, 2023 at 3:50 pm

Thanks for the article, Geoff.

Kind of left me wondering a couple of things:
1. how many of the named folks in the article ride mass transit daily?
2. this all seems a bit cult-like… or like some type of religion (wait, was “cult-like” already mentioned?)


Robert Burns May 31, 2023 at 5:51 pm

I’m sorry, but I don’t have the time to wade through this massive article. I wonder to what extent that these bike kooks further development except to radically deserted transit corridors for the Great Bike Hope. If the work is done by the City then any developer scam would be in the mythical Transit Oriented Development or cleanup after business have been trashed by loss of clientelle. My gripe is that the current crop of whores running the City seem to be infatuated with C.S.D. to the prejudice of the City which has wasted millions of dollars building incompetent projects for special-interest kooks.


Frank Gormlie June 1, 2023 at 8:44 am

You’re right there, Robert. Those “running the City seem to be infatuated with Circulate San Diego to the prejudice of the City,” and that’s what Geoff’s post shows in detail.


Mat Wahlstrom June 1, 2023 at 6:36 am

Great work, Geoff. It would take a whole other article to detail Circulate’s grooming of city staffers loyal to their agenda rather than to the taxpayers footing their salaries.

But this reminds me of Voice of San Diego’s apparent violation of IRS rules on behalf of Circulate: between August 1 and 4 of last year, VoSD became a Platinum Corporate Member (for $7,500 annually) of Circulate. Besides the obvious ethical and professional conflicts of interest with a so-called news org sponsoring a lobby shop and violating its own Funding Policy [], VoSD is also organized as a 501(c)3.

VoSD’s 990 for 2022 [] was filed on March 7, but I don’t see under Parts V or IX or wherever it should be that they paid for membership in any organization or otherwise account for this expense.

If nothing else, VoSD’s own ‘member supporters’ should question where their money is actually going, and whether VoSD’s reportage is really performed “without regard for access to power, authority or favor.”


lyle June 1, 2023 at 8:38 am

I’d like to see a link that shows VOSD is a platinum member of CSD.


Vern June 1, 2023 at 9:25 am

VOSD’s logo is on the Circulate website under “Platinum Members”.


Lyle June 1, 2023 at 4:51 pm

Thank you, Vern. From a quick look at that page, it appears some of my tax dollars are going to support CSD. That’s not how I would have chosen to spend that money.


Mat Wahlstrom June 1, 2023 at 5:16 pm

You said it, Lyle. It’s no more acceptable for the San Diego Housing Commission to be a donor to Circulate than would it be for the California Department of Health and Human Services to be a donor to Focus on the Family.


Paul June 5, 2023 at 8:36 am

Wait, do you think the Voice of San Diego is taxpayer supported?


lyle June 5, 2023 at 1:32 pm

No Paul, the CSD website (provided by Vern) lists many sponsors, some of which are public agencies. I didn’t say VOSD in is tax-supported. Sorry for not stating that clearly.


LBruce June 1, 2023 at 12:46 pm

Very insightful comments. Never underestimate the impact of the staff.


Geoff Page June 1, 2023 at 12:53 pm

Interesting stuff, Mat, thanks for adding that information.


DiegoK June 1, 2023 at 8:33 am

Here is another group worthy of scrutiny “YIMBY Democrats of San Diego County”

Voice of San Diego calls them an influential group, which has endorsed Monica Montgomery for the County Board of Supervisors.

The officers of this “grassroots organization” include Chamber of Commerce staff, Todd Gloria’s staff, developers and lobbyists.


LBruce June 1, 2023 at 1:07 pm

YIMBY Democrats is an Astroturf organization (fake grassroots) for development and big business interests. I recently took a gander at their board and their affiliations which are as follows:

YIMBY Democrats Board of Directors 4/18/23
• Public Affairs Manager, San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce
• VP at Falcon Strategies, a government, community relations, and communications consulting firm representing a variety of developers and SDG&E
• Product Marketing at U.S. Digital Response, a government tech contractor
• Government Relations Account Manager at Intesa Communications Group, strategic communications and government relations firm, also representing developers
• Deputy Director of Government Affairs at the City of San Diego, a department that reports to the Mayor
• Housing & Sustainable Communities Planner at San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG)
• Mayor Gloria’s former political director who now describes herself as a “builder and advocate”
• Former staff with the Greater San Diego Chamber of Commerce, now an Analyst at CBRE providing research and analysis support of commercial real estate markets.
• Financial Services “Strategy Executive” promoting the densification of Uptown, Hillcrest, University City (the latter by 30,000-35,00 units)


Frank Gormlie June 1, 2023 at 1:10 pm

Thank you, thank you.


Geoff Page June 1, 2023 at 1:39 pm

Well done, LBruce, thanks.


Chris June 1, 2023 at 1:24 pm

Self described YIMBYs are definitely an interesting case in shifting political ideologies. Most lean very left/progressive in just about all matters that divide left and right. The one major exception (which is what makes them YIMBYs) is the supply side economics model in regards to housing resulting in being bed mates with developers.
YIMBYs want development in the form high dense housing and cities to be less car dependent whereas in the past it was spread out suburban sprawl with single family homes. And let’s be honest, some of that sprawl is pretty damn ugly and to me just as bad as any high rise concrete multi family unit.


DiegoK June 1, 2023 at 4:34 pm

Developers have seen that urban sprawl has run its course so they need to find ways to rezone areas that were developed long ago. My issue with the YIMBYs (development industry) is they want everything to be on the table. Let’s up zone the whole City and see what happens is not strategic planning.

YIMBYs talk about climate change but how do mega ADU’s in Mira Mesa get people out of their cars? If they were true progressives, they would be advocating for policies that incentivizes home ownership, building within a 1/4 mile of all trolley lines and pushing for improved transit to feed trolley stations.


Robert Burns June 1, 2023 at 4:40 pm

It’s a con game for them, pimping the crisis, and largely a fetish for others. Rush hour traffic is far worse for “climate change” than current residential zoning. The only reason for unaffordable housing is unaffordable land prices which, by the way, is not the norm just over the border though the land doesn’t know any difference. Personally, I think that we have to get people out of the planet not people out of cars, but that’s quite inconvenient.


JTM June 4, 2023 at 6:48 am

These YIMBYs and so-called housing crisis “experts” almost never talk about the impacts of vacation rentals, which have pushed thousands of San Diegans out of their leased homes. They never talk about the 1% of wealthy speculators from out of town who come in and buy up every property they can before regular working San Diegans can even make a bid. Both of these things drive up the housing shortage and insane rent prices but they won’t talk about them? Why—because they need these drivers of problems as an excuse to build more, as if building more will just magically take care of the supply side problem when we still have problems with wealthy speculators and STRVs (whether legal or illegal, there is no discernible enforcement).


Robert Burns June 5, 2023 at 9:32 am

Right on. Also, awhile back 50% housing costing $500,000 or more nationwide was purchased by foreigners (e.g., Russians, Chinese); that, too, is rarely discussed. México used to do well to avoid that disease.


Chris June 5, 2023 at 10:12 am

Odd post. I don’t know which YIMBYs you interact with, but most people who refer to themselves as YIMBYs are actually on the same page as people who get referred to as NIMBYs in regards to STVRs. YIMBYs want single family neighborhoods to be upzoned to high density multi family apartments (which we all know) but they want them to be full time residents, not people visiting. That’s the one thing YIMBYs AND NIMBYs agree on.


Chris June 5, 2023 at 10:14 am

Property owners who want to use their property for STVR purposes are a whole separate matter.


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