On Nov. 2, our City Council will consider a community proposal to urge the Unified Port to re-designate the vacant “dirt” lot at the Ferry Landing as passive open space instead of the glass and steel restaurants proposed several years ago that have never been brought to fruition. Further Ferry Landing development will impair public recreational access and limit use of this precious resource only to those who can afford it. We believe the creation of a public park on this site dedicated to former Coronado resident and California State Senator James R. Mills is the only use that is consistent with the Coastal Act as well as the Unified Port’s professed mission of environmental justice and sustainability.

External forces aim to deprive the Coronado community of self-determination. The combination of government mandates dictating zoning and density (RHNA, SB9), and other external forces (the Port’s yet-to-be released Master Plan) leverage for other’s benefit the transformation of our residential neighborhoods into high density housing, robust commercial development and “activated” entertainment venues.

Council has the weighty task of balancing appropriate growth, while making paramount the overall health and well-being of our community. Adding to the difficult (but equally imperative) tasks facing Council are the dangers that climate change poses and the City’s need to create a sensible climate action plan. We also must account for the recently updated geological survey that shows earthquake faults running directly through our City and a myriad of other matters materially impacting the safety and life quality of Coronado residents.

Open space features natural, not human-made, public art (as Mike Donovan noted recently); it also features birdsong and bay sounds as musical composition. A welcoming open and public space that fosters water-serving recreation is consistent with everything the late James Mills accomplished through the passage of the Coastal Act.

Access for all Californians is a reflection of the ultimate stewardship that balances the community we are today against the impact today’s choices have on our future. Please contact the City Council prior to its November 2 meeting by submitting written comments to the Coronado City Clerk at cityclerk@coronado.us in support of Coronado Legacy Collaborative’s proposal.

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