Construction Activity at Former Ranchos on Pt Loma Avenue

by on July 25, 2023 · 17 comments

in Ocean Beach

There is what appears to be some beginning construction / demolition activity at the former Ranchos restaurant and market at Pt Loma Avenue and Ebers. A reader sent the photos.

4705 Point Loma Avenue

The project at 4705 Point Loma Ave. is based on a coastal development permit for the demolition of the existing retail building and the construction of two MDU (multi-dwelling unit) buildings – each with 4 units. This project is an affordable housing density bonus project.

Neighbors and people in the community probably are breathing sighs of relief to know something is going in there, as this building has remained vacate for years – if not a decade. The site of Ranchos, a joint market and vegetarian Mexican restaurant at one time, the building went unused when they closed. Then a veterans’ group that had been kicked out of its space on Newport Avenue tried to lease it but met such fierce opposition from locals they dumped their plan. Nobody has done anything with it since. (For context, see this.)

Back in 2022, the Project Review Committee recommended denial of the project based on the arrangement of structures blocking off public east-west views and lack of ground level patios, courtyards and interaction with public right-of-way. The vote was 4-0.

Comments from the PRC (from minutes):

Balconies and offsets appreciated, good roofline. Affordability is a big issue here. No outdoor space or engagement with sidewalk, could at least do common podium deck. Roof decks are not a safe alternative to outdoor space for pets/children. Uses raised planter to exceed 30’ height. Be wary of paving because of sidewalk vending ordinance. Using homeless as reason for having no patios is dismissive, the walled off street frontage encourages bad behavior.

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Linda July 25, 2023 at 1:26 pm

More AbnBs coming your way…
I wish neighborhoods would have listened to Mission Beach when we cried out for the beach communities help. I warned you would be next! We could have Saved Our Neighborhoods but it didn’t effect you until now. With our current one sided government…good luck. Don’t vote for a party vote for the issues. Don’t drink the cool- aid.


Chris July 25, 2023 at 4:48 pm

Whether or not it becomes an Airbnb remains to be seen, but it makes me wonder how many people who don’t want any Airbnbs in their neighborhoods have stayed in one when they were traveling? I’ll admit that I have.


GML July 26, 2023 at 8:14 am

Same here Chris. I think reasonable and enforceable regulations are really the answer.


Chris July 26, 2023 at 8:30 am

Thank you GML. The last time my wife and I stayed in one was NYC back in 2019. The host was a renter in the East Village. We stayed with her in her apartment using the 2nd bedroom. The previous time we stayed in an Airbnb was in Van Nuys in a spare room of a house. The owners were with us the whole time. There’s a big difference between owner/renter occupied hosting of Airbnb and whole single family homes or apartment complexes being used purely as an STVR.


sealintheSelkirks July 29, 2023 at 12:32 pm

Never have, never will, Chris. All you have to do is refuse to give in and find other alternatives.

As a matter of fact Judi Curry is currently putting my younger brother up at her house on Sunset Cliffs for a few days as he’s on the last leg of a country-wide month-long train trip before he heads back home to Ft. Bragg NorCal. He was here at my place July 1st and just got into San Diego yesterday from the East Coast to re-visit his childhood haunts of PB/MB/OB. He hasn’t been in San Diego since his last visit to my OB shop Seal’s Ding Repair in the early 80s. Been a while, eh?

I did warn him that he probably isn’t going to like the changes he will see…

Thanks, Judi!!



Jon July 25, 2023 at 6:29 pm

While I agree with your sentiment, if it were to become Airbnb I think that’s the right place because it’s already zoned mixed-use and there’s other surrounding businesses. The real crime was allowing these things to eat up residentially zoned areas and displace long-term current residents. If our city had been more efficient they could have welcomed Airbnb into zones like this while enforcing zoning laws in our neighborhoods and made it a win-win for local businesses and resident community.


kh July 28, 2023 at 3:24 pm

Who didn’t listen? OB has been fighting tooth and nail for 7 years to get restrictions on Airbnbs to protect long term housing. It’s our councilmember that ignored us and gave away the farm. And 30% of Mission Beach too.


Chris July 25, 2023 at 4:45 pm

If this site really becomes “affordable” housing then that’s a good thing. A lot better than it just sitting there as it has for the past 10 years rotting. But then again, if local homeowners show the same selfishness they exhibited when it was proposed to be the new home of the VFW post the was kicked out of their space, who knows what will end up happening?


Vern July 25, 2023 at 5:35 pm

Sample correction:
“… But then again, if local residents show the same concern they exhibited when it was proposed to be the new saloon of the VFW…”


Chris July 25, 2023 at 6:18 pm



Chris July 25, 2023 at 6:26 pm

You seem to have this thing about quoting me without explaining your point. Why not say you disagree and say why?


Chris July 25, 2023 at 7:02 pm

Ok I get it. It’s the bar part. Yes I’m aware they didn’t want an alcohol serving establishment in their residential neighborhood. That still doesn’t change my opinion of their selfishness. Heavens think of the kids who live near by. Doesn’t matter anyway since they won their battle. Now I figure they won’t want an “affordable” apartment complex in their presence cuz think of the property values.


Vern July 25, 2023 at 7:12 pm

“… Now I figure they won’t want an “affordable” apartment complex in their presence…”

Who’s “they”?


Chris July 25, 2023 at 7:18 pm

You already know who I’m referring to.


unwashedwalMartThonG July 25, 2023 at 10:12 pm

Man, after reading some of the above, I’m wondering: Did anyone pay attention in English class?


Sorry not Sorry July 26, 2023 at 12:02 pm

Unwashed, I often wonder the same thing. But I think you/we finally met someone with not one, but two left thumbs.


Chris July 26, 2023 at 3:07 pm

I’m probably one of who you are referring to. What can I say? Typing is not my strong point (despite working in the military equivalent a human resources office lol). Also factor in typing from my phone which I’m even worse at.


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