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92106 Meets 92107: Peninsula engages in Community Conversation

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A packed house turns out for the Peninsula Community Conversation, April 17, at the UPSES Portuguese Hall.
Susan DeMaggio

The evening was modeled after a “Leaders Meeting,” where board chiefs gather to share news, plans, events, concerns and solutions. And that it was — made all the sweeter by beer, wine, pizza and sandwiches, courtesy of The Venetian, Surf Side Deli and Miguel’s!

The Peninsula Community Conversation, April 17, at the UPSES Portuguese Hall, was organized by the Point Loma Association to “show how working together benefits the organizations and Peninsula residents.” The hall was filled with people who came to hear all about it.

Seven civic leaders (representing Ocean Beach, Midway District and Point Loma) provided those in attendance with project updates and community concerns, and City officials arrived to listen in and field questions.

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Ann Swanson, Faith Hussey, Marty and Bob Kolb are on hand to explain the now underway Phase 2 of the Sunset Cliffs Natural Park Hillside Improvements Project. It includes native habitat restoration and new trails in the 50-acre hillside section of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park.
Susan DeMaggio

The takeaway is that there is strength in numbers and cooperation counts. Noting that residents should “be careful what you wish for,” District 2 City Council member Lorie Zapf cautioned planners that with the current makeup of the Council, the word-of-the-day is “upzone,” and the smart growth and land-use mission calls for density and more height. “You’ve got to really understand what you’re getting into when you call for community planning updates,” she said.

The Peninsula issues on the table continue to be short-term vacation rentals; the area’s homeless population and the recycling center; crime; crumbling infrastructure of streets, sidewalks and shoreline cliffs; and City bureaucracy slowing community beautification projects.

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OB Veterans Plaza advocates have information detailing their plans. Their meetings are held 7 p.m. second Thursdays at the OB Rec Center, 4726 Santa Monica Ave.
Susan DeMaggio

Mayoral representative Anthony George stood to acknowledge the feedback and said the City is working on the issues mentioned. He invited comments via e-mail to georgea@sandiego.gov or by phone (619) 236-5950.

Before and after the 90-minute forum, representatives from a handful of non-profit groups staffed booths to share information. Participants agreed that the meeting was a success and vowed to hold them more often so communication could lead to action and understanding.