The Scripps Ranch Planning Group's (SRPG) chair attended the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority's meeting in October. The Airport Authority decided to include in the second tier analysis five military bases, the desert site, and Lindbergh Field as the future international airport. The military sites are Miramar, East Miramar, Camp Pendleton, NAS North Island, and March Air Force base.
The two sites adjacent to Scripps Ranch are Miramar and East Miramar. The Public Working Group looked at East Miramar and found there would be more than 700-million cubic yards of earth to be moved in order to construct two 12,000-foot parallel runways. Staff for the Airport Authority recommended East Miramar be added to the short list.
It has not been made clear whether it would be possible to retain Miramar as a military air station and construct a public airport at East Miramar. If the Marines and Navy were to leave Miramar, what is the purpose of having East Miramar?
Comments from a Scripps Ranch resident at the meeting raised objection to the staff recommendation because the tier one screening analysis failed to identify the 3,847 housing units and four new schools that the Department of Defense wants to build. Additionally, the screening failed to identify the impact that an international airport at either Miramar or East Miramar will have on the relocated 1,800-student new middle school.
It was asked of the Airport Authority, how could it be possible to construct an airport on environmentally sensitive land, but not housing? In summary, it stands to reason that fatal flaws in one environmental impact study should translate in finding fatal flaws in another environmental impact report for the same property.
Included below (left) is a conceptual drawing by the Airport Authority's consultant showing a possible location of the runways in East Miramar. The exact location has not been decided. There was discussion of rotating the configuration to the southwest--likely to avoid UTC and La Jolla. As drawn, the end of the northern runway is approximately 4,500 feet from residents in Chantemar, Loire Valley, and Whispering Ridge. The impact to the future military housing would be equally significant.
The conceptual plan for Miramar, where the existing hangars are located, include a second runway that would necessitate approaching planes to fly approximately 2,000-3,000 feet above the southern boundaries of StoneBridge Estates, Versante, Birch Bluff, Whispering Ridge, Loire Valley, Crown Pointe, Chantemar, Chabad, Western Pacific Housing, Alliant International University (AIU), the new middle school, the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), and the Naval Reserve Center.
The Airport Authority, created by state law, requires a countywide ballot to select which site to move forward with. In the meantime, the Airport Authority anticipates spending $12 million in consulting fees to analyze the environmental impacts of each of the short-listed sites. The SRPG requested staff from the Airport Authority update the Scripps Ranch community, but was informed that due to the amount of work being performed, we should check back with them later.
Running on a different but concurrent path is the 2006 base realignment and closure (BRAC) process. According to the Marines, this process will have a different focus in that any sites that will be listed by the Secretary of Defense in 2005 will be looked more at realignment and increasing efficiencies than closures.
It is important to understand that until the Secretary of Defense releases the list, there is not an official list of sites subject to BRAC. The SRPG has obtained letters from Congress members Cunningham, Issa, Calvert, Hunter, Davis, Boxer, and Filner supporting the retention of military bases in San Diego County.
We have also received letters from State Assembly members La Suer and Plescia. The Scripps Ranch Civic Association (SRCA) has requested County Supervisor Pam Slater write her position about keeping Miramar and East Miramar for military uses. City Councilmember Brian Maienschein will deliver his opposition in writing to losing Miramar.
Also, you can write to the chair of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority, Joe Craver, at P.O. Box 82776, San Diego, CA 92138. Let him know your concerns, as well as what a change in the status of MCAS Miramar would do to our community.
Chabad's Conditional Use Permit (CUP) for its 250-child preschool/daycare was approved by the City's Planning Commission. As part of the ongoing negotiations with Chabad, a "master plan" will be submitted to the city for all future uses. In the first step in the process, Chabad announced that it is now considering applying for a Community Plan Amendment and rezone of the property to include 350 market rate senior housing units.
Chabad's architect, M.W. Steele (and City Planning Commissioner), and developer, ColRich, a division of Pulte Homes, explained Chabad's changes in what the community identified as the second phase of future construction. The primary reason for introducing a change is that Chabad wants to be able to have grandparents live in close proximity to their grandchildren attending the school.
The proposal was shown in a conceptual form and few details were provided. SRPG members and interested community residents expressed primary concerns about density, traffic, and whether such a proposal is appropriate.
Other issues included: monetary commitment from Chabad to a "fair share contribution" for traffic impacts similar to StoneBridge Estates--formerly Rancho Encantada--and Western Pacific Housing; building size; building location; building height; architectural; sewer capacity; uncertainty of constructing its high school; how a subdivision would be accomplished; loss of multiple habitat preservation area land; no public recreation for any new units; noncompliance with the 30% busing assumption used by Chabad to substantially comply with the underlying United States International University (USIU, now AIU) CUP; and, compliance with the agreement between Chabad and the Crown Pointe Homeowners Association (HOA). Chabad anticipates applying for a Community Plan Initiation in November and agreed to host subcommittee meetings with the SRPG and residents.
Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Miramar's Major Panknin provided an update to the SRPG on its rifle range in East Miramar. The noise section of the environmental analysis performed by the Marines was given to the SRPG.
The range is located south of Loire Valley and Whispering Ridge HOAs and southeast of the Chantemar HOA. The range hours were 6 am to 6:30 pm, Monday through Friday. However, the Marines, in response to community concerns championed by Councilmember Brian Maienschein, agreed to start no earlier than 7 am. The range will save the Marines thousands of man-hours and tax dollars by not having to commute to Camp Pendleton.
The San Diego Metro Wastewater's USIU-Miramar Trunk Replacement is proceeding, and the engineering consultant has submitted its 100% design drawings. The project will require micro tunneling under, and open trench construction along, Pomerado Road.
The construction impacts will be examined and recommendations will be forwarded to the city about hours of operation, elimination of bike lanes, generator noise issues, and traffic control. Parts of Pomerado Road will have people directing traffic due to lane closures. The school district has been encouraged to work with the city to ensure cost savings and to coordinate construction activities in 2004 through 2006.
The San Vicente Water Pipeline Subsequent Environmental Impact Report (EIR) comments were submitted by the SRPG in October. The community's comments addressed traffic, noise, vibration, cultural, and biological concerns. Of importance was the omission of analysis to impacts that would affect St. Gregory the Great's school that will be built in StoneBridge Estates.
The SRPG asked the San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) to balance the importance of this massive regional project and make a decision that would logically minimize the impacts. To that end, the SRPG requested the SDCWA select the Palomar site in South Poway as a non-mining site. The final EIR should be out in December.
Western Pacific Housing (WPH) has purchased a 3.92-acre commercial office building on Erma Road. The Daily Transcript reported that WPH intends to relocate the USA Credit Union and build multifamily units. The property is zoned for 15-29 units per acre and has a retail component, making it a mixed-use site.
The SRPG thanks City Planner Dan Monroe for providing information about the zoning and entitlements under the Land Development Code. The SRPG has not asked WPH about the property; we will provide updates when that occurs.
Briefly, the Miramar Filtration Plant community committee met in October and was given an introduction as to possible signage at the lake entrance. The artist was asked to attend the November SRPG meeting to discuss options.
Pursuit of constructing the Pomerado Road "flow-through lane" made significant advances in October. The city's engineering department assigned staff to begin formulating what needs to be studied and how it should be presented to CalTrans to make this project happen.
The gate to lock the Community Park has been approved. Miramar Ranch North (MRN) budgeted the funds to hire a security company that will lock the gate at night after the park is closed. There is no timetable for the gate installation yet, so please continue to report suspicious activity in any of our parks to the police.
When funds became available after the developer projects had been completed, MRN programmed approximately $61,500 for field improvements. At our October meeting the Miramar Ranch North Planning Committee (MRNPC) passed a motion requesting that the fund usage be reviewed by the city attorney to ensure the usage is permitted. If it is, we will proceed to fund the project.
The cinder block pump station built by Shea at the freeway entrance to northbound Interstate 15 remains as unsightly as ever. The MRNPC is meeting with Water Department officials, who now own the building, to see if they will provide site landscaping to beautify that project. We will keep you posted.
As reported in the September Newsletter Councilmember Brian Maienschein and his staff had some of the fences removed and trees planted for the homeowners in the Fieldstone Summit area. Those residents are part of MRN's Landscape Maintenance Assessment District (MAD), but had inadvertently been left off the MAD maps.
Another programmed capital improvement project was to remove the chain link fence and in some areas replace it with our white "country style" fences. At our October meeting the MRNPC passed a motion requesting the fund usage be reviewed by the city attorney to ensure the usage is permitted. If it is, we will remove the remaining chain link fence and look into improvements.
If you would like to help shape the community and make it a better place, we can use you. You must be at least 18 years old, have attended at least one MRNPC meeting in the last 12 months, and be either a resident, business owner, or property owner in the MRN area.
Meetings are the first Tuesday of each month at 7 pm at the Information Center, 11885 Cypress Canyon Road. If you wish to receive a meeting agenda, contact Bill Bernard at 549-0979. Even if you do not want to be a member, come to the meetings. Your voice is important!