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Council President Todd Gloria weighs in on Mayor's Balboa Park plan

SAN DIEGO – City Council President Todd Gloria today commented about the Mayor’s proposed changes to the Plaza de Panama area of Balboa Park.

“I have consistently favored the removal of cars from Balboa Park’s Plaza de Panama. Because Mayor Filner’s proposal partially accomplishes that vision and because the project would implement a temporary change, I believe I can support the requested $300,000 appropriation during the budget process,” Gloria said.

“I would like to know more about how the likely impacts would be mitigated, and I encourage the Mayor to seriously consider any suggestions that will help smooth the transition to the temporary plan.”

The consideration of the Fiscal Year 2014 budget is the only opportunity for the City Council and community to weigh in on the Mayor’s proposal. The Mayor proposed the project as part of the Park and Recreation Department budget, which will be discussed at the City Council’s Budget Review hearing at 2 pm Monday, May 6 on the 12th floor of the City Administration Building, 202 C St.

Gloria said he will work with the Mayor, as well as Balboa Park stakeholders and surrounding communities, to make sure the project is successful, should it be funded in the budget. He said he also hopes to develop thresholds that will be used as a guide to determine if impacts have exceeded acceptable levels.

Potential impacts of concern that Gloria identified include, but are not limited to:

- reduction in overall park use

- reduction in attendance at cultural institutions

- reduction in overall guest experience in the park

- insufficient parking in the park

- insufficient parking in the adjacent neighborhoods

- poor traffic circulation in the Central Mesa

- traffic impacts in adjacent neighborhoods

To read more public reaction to the Mayor's plan for Plaza de Panama, click HERE and HERE.