Push to revitalize El Cajon Blvd. in North Park - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Push to revitalize El Cajon Blvd. in North Park

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - The shopping district called The Boulevard in North Park is working hard to attract more business and shoppers to the area, and to it make safer.

The Boulevard on El Cajon and Utah has a butcher shop, a furniture store, a barber, and a studio for barre workout.

The revitalization has more people flocking to El Cajon Boulevard by car, foot or bicycle, and mobility advocates want to make sure it's safe.

"We are mission driven to revitalize El Cajon Boulevard," said Beryl Forman, from the El Cajon Boulevard Business Improvement Association.

Only ten years ago, the El Cajon corridor was known to be unsafe, and now, neighbors, businesses and visionaries are part of the movement for change.

Every third Friday of the month, the pop-up market called The Boulevard showcases local chefs, vendors, offers prepared food, and shops open.

With the resurgence comes more people who walk and bike on El Cajon Boulevard, also known as the ECB.

The non-profit Circulate San Diego, an advocacy group for safe mobility, named El Cajon Boulevard as one of the eight most dangerous streets in San Diego for walking and biking.

Since 30-percent of all collisions have involved people walking, the group launched Vision Zero, to eliminate deaths to zero by 2025.

In the 1950's, El Cajon Boulevard was used as the main road to get from East and West in San Diego.

With the help of developers, the four-mile district will also be a place to safely walk and bike to shop and dine.

"We have seen tremendous change in North Park and surrounding areas, demographics have changed, everything has been cleaned up and we are very happy with the progress that has been made, said David Iwashita with Grasshopper Development.

Whether it be plans for an urban park, serving hot food in a pop-up market, or roasting fresh coffee beans, it is about bringing community together. "We will continue to do things here on the boulevard because we do love our city," said Iwashita.

Last month, the City Council approved $5.8 million for the North Park Mobility Plan on University Avenue.

Circulate San Diego's Vision Zero campaign is a $15 million project that wants curb extensions, buffers between bike and vehicle lanes, and high-visibility crosswalks.

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