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City council to vote on Mission Valley 2050 plan for growth

A neighborhood known for its sea of parking lots could receive a makeover.

SAN DIEGO — The City of San Diego on Monday released a plan it is calling the future of Mission Valley, that would expand the neighborhood to accommodate 50,000 new residents.

Nancy Graham is the development project director who is working on Mission Valley’s 2050 master plan.

“Mission Valley is known for a large sea of parking lots, and we see that as an opportunity were those lots could be revitalized and be a place where we can put homes. You’re going to see more a lot more bike lanes, more pedestrian bridges. You’re going to find a lot of infrastructure that supports active transportation,” she said.

Some community members said they want to replace strip malls in the area with mixed used development – giving way to a “live, work, play” neighborhood.

“If we had more homes for those workers, they could work, take the trolley, and they could ride bikes and be able to get to their destination more easily,” said Graham.

The city held 20 meetings and worked with developers to receive input. Developers will eventually be responsible for building out the new Mission Valley vision.

“It will take, you know, a few decades for all of these things to happen,” said Graham.

“The development comes at a time when there’s a market and when a need exists, she said.

While the plan hopes residents will use public transportation, there are concerns about the traffic that would come to Mission Valley 50,000 new residents.

Planners said congestion starts with cars waiting to get on the freeway, backing up those using surface streets. That is why the construction of extra bridges across the San Diego River come in, like one that would link Fenton Parkway with Camino Del Rio North.

“Those missing links cause a lot of traffic on roads like Mission Center and Qualcomm Way because people don’t have other choices,” said Graham.

While it may be hard to imagine what Mission Valley might look like in the future, Graham said that is the point of a long-range plan to guide the future.

“It took 30 years to build out the 1985 plan, and you know, it'll take 30 years to build out this one, too,” said Graham.

The city council is set to vote on this plan on Tuesday. You can view the plan here.

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