A local issue – San Diego Trolley Follies
(the Mid-Coast Corridor Transit Project)
San Diego transportation planners want to extend the current money-gobbling trolley system by about 11 miles north at a capital cost of about $2 billion, about $200 million per mile – yes, those are the real numbers. The project would be paid for by a combination of federal funds and dedicated tax revenue, but still leaving a large deficiency in funding to be paid by means yet unknown (perhaps a bond issue??).
Part of the initial plan, cooked up by San Diego City planners, commercial property owners, and developers was to put high-density, high-rise housing close to trolley stops, in an area that’s mainly single-family residences. Putting in high-rises housing would have required the San Diego City Council to rescind long-standing height limitation ordinances.
There was a furor, to put it mildly. For the time being, the height-limitation removal proposal is off the table. However, there’s a reasonable suspicion that it will go back on the table, perhaps because of California laws related to lowering greenhouse gas emissions, with consequent favoring of public transportation and building high-density residences close to public transportation (e.g., trolley) stations.
I’ve collected a lot of comments and ideas related to this proposal. The current version (March, 2015) is HERE or
For some additional information and perspectives on the local situation, height limitations, etc. go HERE or