By Tommy Hough
If you haven't taken a moment to see or comment on potential development updates and zoning changes to the Mira Mesa Community Plan, you can to do so via this city webpage. The page leads you to development options in four different areas of Mira Mesa and Sorrento Valley, including:
Mira Mesa Gateway – This is the area incorporating the Islands shopping center and Edwards Cinema plaza immediately to the west of I-15, and north of the Legacy Apartments complex and Miramar College. To address concerns I've been hearing about this one, while the Village Green and Woods senior mobile home parks along Black Mountain Rd. are included in the development proposal zone, none of the plans apparently under consideration affect those locations.
Mira Mesa Town Center – This includes the shopping center areas north and south of Mira Mesa Blvd. east of Reagan Rd. and west of Camino Ruiz, and including a sliver of the southeast corner of Mira Mesa Blvd. and Camino Ruiz and the Mira Mesa Medical Mall area on the northeast corner, where the new Jollibee is going up behind IHOP.
Sorrento Mesa – This is broken down into three development options across Sorrento Valley, including the open commercial space near Qualcomm at the northeast corner of Mira Mesa Blvd. and Pacific Heights Blvd. just west of the Residence Inn; the Barnes Canyon Rd. corridor west of Lusk Blvd.; and the commercial area west of Camino Santa Fe, north of Flanders, and south of Mira Mesa Blvd. which could be zoned for dense housing.
Miramar Gateway – The north side Miramar Rd. west of I-15 and east of Camino Ruiz is an area already within the region's development footprint that could be "neighborhoodized" with some zoning changes and conversions of industrial and office park space into housing, with stories added in the course of conversions and renovations. This is also along what could be a good transit route on Miramar Rd., and could one day be an anchor for a trolley extension between UTC and I-15.
In the case of the Mira Mesa Gateway and Mira Mesa Town Center, you can select current zoning options if you want nothing to change, and there's an opportunity to leave comments at the end. While I've previously advocated for repurposed and renovated housing along the north side of Miramar Rd, no one's going to confuse me with being pro-development, and I'm generally not impressed by the "pretty pictures" that so often accompany development package proposals.
The questions to be considered for the proposals posted at the city site are how will they look in 10 or 20 years, how will they integrate into or improve their respective neighborhoods, and what kind of unforeseen traffic impacts may come with them? Some of these details can be addressed over time by a matter of code enforcement, something the city continues to lack active action on.
None of the zoning or development proposals currently being considered relate to the pending Stone Creek and Three Roots developments along Carroll Canyon. Construction on Three Roots could begin as early as next year at the southeast corner of Camino Santa Fe and Carroll Canyon Rd. The much larger Stone Creek development was just approved by the Mira Mesa Planning Group at the Vulcan quarry on either side of Camino Ruiz at Carroll Canyon Rd.
A San Diego County planning commissioner and former radio host at 91X and FM 94/9, Tommy Hough works as an environmental consultant with the ReWild Mission Bay campaign, and is a California Democratic Party delegate and the co-founder and former president of San Diego County Democrats for Environmental Action.