SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The city's Balboa Park Committee will solicit public comment on a plan to ban vehicles from the park's Plaza de Panama during a 9 a.m. meeting Saturday.
The Park and Recreation Board committee will meet at the Balboa Park Club to discuss a privately funded, $33 million project to make the plaza north of the Spreckels Organ Pavilion more pedestrian friendly.
Philanthropist and former Qualcomm chief executive Irwin Jacobs headed the fundraising effort.
The plan calls for traffic to be diverted from the Cabrillo Bridge around the Museum of Man, and for construction of an underground parking garage, with a rooftop garden, behind the organ pavilion.
Bruce Coons, of the Save Our Heritage Organisation, supports the proposed ban on cars, but said the current plan "is extremely destructive and would forever alter the iconic Cabrillo Bridge and the historic landscape, and would hide the most important character-defining features of the front entrance to this National Register district."
Coons said the plan is at odds with the Interior Department's standards for historic properties, because it would alter the entrance. Most preservation organizations are against the proposal, he said.
Plaza de Panama, along with many of Balboa Park's architectural center pieces, was built for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition, but since the 1960s has primarily been used as a parking lot.
Mayor Jerry Sanders said the plaza was designed as a gathering place for park visitors and a hub of cultural activities, but was converted into a few dozen parking spaces.
He hopes to have the project completed in time for the 2015 centennial celebration of the Panama-California Exposition.
Temperatures are expected to be about average over the next week throughout San Diego County with the warmest temperatures in that period expected Friday and Saturday.
Coming together to celebrate diversity was the message of a block party Friday night in North Park – which took on new meaning after the violence in Virginia.
Laguna Beach in Orange County is gearing up for a large anti-immigration rally this weekend and police are preparing for any trouble that may come out of the “America First” protest set for Sunday.
The brother of a Sinaloa cartel leader has been arrested at an Arizona border crossing, less than a month after his nephew surrendered to U.S. authorities.
A former high school football hero, who joined the marines and died serving our country, was laid to rest at Miramar National Cemetery.
For the first time, Medicare officials have posted online quality scores for some 3,800 hospice providers - including about two dozen in San Diego County.
Escondido police officials said Friday they won't recommend criminal charges against a male physical education teacher at San Pasqual High School being investigated after claims of an inappropriate incident with a female student.
The former assistant chief of staff of the U.S. Navy's Seventh Fleet admitted in federal court in San Diego Friday that he accepted bribes in the form of parties and prostitutes while sneaking proprietary information to foreign defense contractor Glenn "Fat Leonard" Francis and his Singapore-based firm, Glenn Defense Marine Asia.