Strategic Plan 2014

Neighborhoods First Coalition Initial Strategic Plan

Introductory Statement

San Diego City Council District 6 is a microcosm of the City of San Diego. It is comprised of many of the largest, and most diverse neighborhoods in San Diego, and is home to an array of small businesses, flourishing high-tech and bio-tech companies, and growing craft breweries. The residents and businesses that reside in the district are neighborhood leaders that are determined to work hard in advocating that District 6 move forward in a positive direction.

Background

District 6 includes a number of vibrant neighborhoods and organizations that advocate on their behalf. Town Councils and Community Planning Groups serve on behalf of the residents in each of these neighborhoods, identifying neighborhood specific issues and identifying solutions to these problems.

Neighborhood Town Council Planning Group
Clairemont Clairemont Town Council Clairemont Community Planning Group
Kearny Mesa N/A Kearny Mesa Planning Group
Mira Mesa Mira Mesa Town Council Mira Mesa Community Planning Group
Park Village Rancho Peñasquitos Town Council Rancho Peñasquitos Community Planning Group
Sorrento Valley Sorrento Valley Town Council Mira Mesa Community Planning Group

The Neighborhoods First Coalition (NFC) will serve as a sounding board for representatives of each of the neighborhoods within District 6 to share and discuss issues, concerns, community events as well as solutions. Each neighborhood has a voice within the Coalition, with representatives serving as leaders to ensure the needs of the residents are expressed to other District 6 residents, the councilmember, and other City officials.

Members of the Coalition have been selected due to their longstanding commitment toward the betterment of their neighborhood. These individuals have committed their time to working on develop of a strategic plan outlining the critical issues across the district, as well as working toward identifying and implementing a solution. Members will also be working with the City Council office to advocate for solutions and inform District 6 residents about how their voice can be heard.

Members of the Neighborhoods First Coalition are:

Clairemont Mira Mesa Rancho Peñasquitos Sorrento Valley
Marc Schaefer Mitz Lee (Chair) Catherine McDaniel Arnie Edner
Shirley Gilbert Bari Vaz Vicki Shi Ken Kaplan
Ian Clampett Sandy Smith Helen Quintanilla
Jim Adams Kim Tran Dang Wenping Tang
Dan Mera Joleen Leach Tomonaga

Purpose

The following plan is a working document that outlines District-wide goals, neighborhood goals and objectives that will guide the actions of each neighborhood and the city. Each goal has corresponding objectives that can be implemented to help fulfill the priorities that have been outlined by NFC members. This plan will be a working document, and will be updated as members of the NFC continue to meet with residents throughout the district and hear concerns and potential solutions to solve problems.

District-Wide Goals

The NFC has developed the following goals that are of the highest priority to each of the neighborhoods within District 6. These priorities reflect the input from each of the members of the NFC and residents. Specific actions all neighborhoods can take to help accomplish these larger goals are listed within each subsection. While the overall goals cross neighborhood boundaries, specific topics are addressed later in the Plan with objectives to accomplish these ideas.

Infrastructure

The poor condition of our streets, sidewalks, water mains and sewer pipes are easily noticed by anyone traveling across the district. With $1 billion in backlogged projects, our community is still waiting for city hall to pay attention and begin investing in our infrastructure. As the physical condition of our neighborhoods have declined, so too has our ability to keep open library and park and recreation facilities for our children and neighbors. While the problem will not be solved overnight, we must prioritize those projects that are most critical to improving the quality of life for our neighbors.

GOAL: Increase the amount of investment in infrastructure throughout District 6 and increase resident participation in prioritizing of projects.

Objectives:

  • Increase participation of residents in the Community Planning Group Capital Improvement Program (CIP) planning process
  • Review opportunities to allow for reallocation of project funds to those closer to completion
  • Continue the “District 6 Pothole Patrol” to proactively identify needed street repairs
  • Provide easy access to ongoing status reports of projects in the planning, construction and completion phases within the district

Traffic

The growing population in San Diego, the deterioration of our streets and the lack of funding to interconnect traffic signals has lead to an increase in traffic congestion within our neighborhoods. Since a great number of our major thoroughfares are built out, we must be creative in how we identify solutions that will reduce congestion. This includes utilizing new technologies and partnering with local businesses that may be able to increase carpool opportunities for employees living and working within the district.

GOAL: Reduce congestion on neighborhood streets and promote alternative transportation options.

Objectives:

  • Advocate for funding of signal optimization for traffic lights throughout the district
  • Develop an official community transportation committee comprised of local businesses, residents and stakeholders
  • Evaluate and promote alternative transportation methods such as bike sharing, vanpools, and increased transit options
  • Work with the Metropolitan Transit Service (MTS) to review existing routes, survey neighborhoods, and realign bus routes to better suit community needs
  • Review current traffic patterns and determine if signal reconfiguration/restriping is beneficial

Community Engagement

It is imperative that residents throughout the district have a voice and are engaged in the decisions that impact their neighborhood. This means interacting with their neighbors, participating in important discussions at community meetings and understanding the value of communicating with government and elected officials. But residents cannot do it on their own. Our city and elected officials must make it easier for residents to obtain data and have the resources available to participate in government.

GOAL: Increase the transparency of information for residents and provide an easy avenue for them to participate in community meetings and interact with government officials.

Objectives:

  • Encourage and facilitate neighborhood self-identification and create a database of service organizations and groups within each neighborhood in District 6 and ask if they would like to be provided information about important events/topics occurring
  • Develop a Resident’s Guide, available on-line and in print, that provides neighborhood and city specific contact information to address common residential issues
  • Provide outreach presentations to service and community organizations throughout the district about the NFC and the Resident’s Guide and encourage participation
  • Encourage participation in Nextdoor and provide updates on neighborhood specific issues when necessary
  • Hold quarterly neighborhood clean-ups throughout recreational areas across District 6
  • Create a centralized volunteer program database that allows groups and individuals seeking to volunteer to coordinate
  • Develop an NFC website that includes a database of service organizations in the district, calendar of neighborhood events, Resident’s Guide, contact information for government officials, and any other information that would be deemed useful for residents

Job Creation and Economic Growth

San Diego is defined by many different industries, including: innovation, military, tourism and our small businesses. District 6 transcends these pillars of San Diego’s economy. It is important that the City play a leadership role in ensuring businesses is able to grow and expand here in San Diego. With more than 100,000 individuals unemployed in the region, it is critical that our City fosters an environment in which businesses both small and large have the tools necessary to begin employing our residents again.

GOAL: Increase the ability of small businesses and entrepreneurs to locate and/or expand their businesses within the district and increase city support services.

Objectives:

  • Advocate for expansion of our Economic Growth Division and Business Improvement District support services
  • Dedicate at least one (1) District 6 staff member to hold the position of small business liaison to assist business owners with city issues
  • Partner with business organizations to host quarterly small business forums to identify common growth initiatives and provide assistance for implementation
  • Promote internships between businesses and students/individuals seeking to gain experience in the private sector
  • Promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs sponsored by the education and workforce community
  • Promote workforce development programs specifically offered to veterans
  • Continue to expand partnership between the tourism industry and restaurants to advocate for promotion of “San Diego Craft Beers” in businesses and establishing more educational tours for visitors
  • Coordinate between brewery owners and property owners within Miramar area to identify strategic partnerships to further increase the number of breweries

Public Safety

The paramount responsibility of our city government is to provide for the safety of its residents. As the city’s fiscal problems persisted, investment in basic public safety services declined. While funding for our police department is left to our elected leaders at City Hall, there are a number of steps residents can take to protect themselves from being a victim of neighborhood crime. Additionally, canyons weave throughout District 6 and often located right next to homes. It is important residents are prepared and are helping neighbors in case of an emergency.

GOAL: Increase awareness and use of tools residents can use to increase safety in their neighborhood.

Objectives:

  • Increase number of Neighborhood Watch street captains throughout the district
  • Identify opportunities to assist in the funding of new Neighborhood Watch signs for newly created programs
  • Utilize social media to provide basic crime prevention tips to residents
  • Increase distribution of crime statistics for each neighborhood to inform residents of what is occurring
  • Increase the number of residents participating in Community Emergency Response Team certification
  • Develop an Emergency Response Council in each neighborhood in District 6 to prepare for disaster response
  • Improve fire safety throughout the district by facilitating neighborhood resident training and cooperation with Fire Department programs
  • Review the feasibility of Neighborhood Code Compliance volunteer teams to handle minor infractions
  • Evaluate opportunities to update pet restrictions to designated “Cool Zones” in city facilities

Education

District 6 includes two San Diego County school districts: the San Diego Unified and Poway Unified School Districts. While the City of San Diego and its elected officials don’t have a direct role in the development of the curriculum taught to our students, our elected leaders play a vital role in ensuring we have an environment by which our children can grow and thrive. Given the right atmosphere and partnerships, students can focus on their studies and obtaining the skills necessary to fill the positions we are working so hard to bring to San Diego.

GOAL: Advocate for safe neighborhoods and expansion of programs that will allow students to obtain skills necessary fill good-paying jobs.

Objectives:

  • Continue to develop relationships between schools and local companies to develop and expand STEM programs
  • Explore options to expand partnerships with other venues and non-profits to provide before- and after-school programs
  • Encourage student participation in mentoring and job training programs offered by local companies and trade associations

Neighborhood Specific Objectives

Each of the goals listed above have been further broken down by each neighborhood. Listed are specific actions (also known as objectives) the city and each neighborhood can take to help accomplish each goal. These actions are not the only ones that may be taken, and the NFC will be consistently looking for input regarding additional actions that may be taken.

Clairemont

Objectives:

  • Review opportunities to create an off-leash dog area at Olive Grove Park
  • Continue to advocate for allocation of funding for Balboa Avenue Revitalization Action Program projects
  • Partner with programs and seek out resources to address homelessness in Tecolote Canyon

Kearny Mesa

Objectives:

  • Work with business owners, community leaders and city staff to promote the “Convoy District” as a top tourist destination in San Diego
  • Review opportunities to increase floor-area ratio within planning group area

Mira Mesa

Objectives:

  • Evaluate possibility of creating a “Civic Center” within Mira Mesa Community Park area, including outreach to residents about future of the Epicentre and Senior Center prior to the extension of any city leases
  • Review opportunities to utilize public/private partnership with local universities to commence a Community Plan Update
  • Evaluate the feasibility of creating a “Mira Mesa Community Newspaper” and website through sponsorship/grant opportunities
  • Facilitate discussion between the Parks and Recreation department and the community to facilitate public/private partnerships for park and playground improvements, to prevent future problems and roadblocks such as those encountered with the installation of shade structures at Westview Neighborhood park
  • Open a dialogue between the California High-Speed Rail Authority, City and County government, local community groups and residents, regarding the Escondido to San Diego segment of the rail line and any potential negative impacts to Miramar college, residents and local businesses

Park Village

Objectives:

  • Evaluate options for additional exit(s) to be used during disasters/evacuations
  • Identify funding opportunities to beautify medians
  • Encourage greater reporting & compliance of code enforcement, especially as they apply to residential issues.
  • Create opportunities for greater community engagement among Park Village residents. Identify opportunities to involve Park Village residents in other district issues/events.
  • Create greater awareness and accountability among Park Village residents to report crime to allow North Eastern Police Station to appropriately respond & add more patrol based on accurately reported needs.

Sorrento Valley

Objectives:

  • Advocate for public/private partnership with the homeowners association to develop “Overlook Park”
  • Evaluate possible additional traffic calming measures to reduce speeding along Sorrento Valley Boulevard and Calle Cristobal (e.g. speed meters or traffic patrols)
  • Improve fire safety by establishing local fire-safety/fire-proofing classes, encouraging Fire Department home reviews for safety evaluation and tips, and assess the benefit of yearly brush management on City land in canyons.
  • Increase Sorrento Valley neighborhood engagement by supporting their self-identification efforts including the placement of Sorrento Valley neighborhood signs at neighborhood entry points and investigating the renovation of mis-identified signs and banners.

District-Wide Goals

The NFC has developed the following goals that are of the highest priority to each of the neighborhoods within District 6. These priorities reflect the input from each of the members of the NFC and residents. Specific actions all neighborhoods can take to help accomplish these larger goals are listed within each subsection. While the overall goals cross neighborhood boundaries, specific topics are addressed later in the Plan with objectives to accomplish these ideas.

Infrastructure

The poor condition of our streets, sidewalks, water mains and sewer pipes are easily noticed by anyone traveling across the district. With $1 billion in backlogged projects, our community is still waiting for city hall to pay attention and begin investing in our infrastructure. As the physical condition of our neighborhoods have declined, so too has our ability to keep open library and park and recreation facilities for our children and neighbors. While the problem will not be solved overnight, we must prioritize those projects that are most critical to improving the quality of life for our neighbors.

GOAL: Increase the amount of investment in infrastructure throughout District 6 and increase resident participation in prioritizing of projects.

Objectives:

  • Increase participation of residents in the Community Planning Group Capital Improvement Program (CIP) planning process
  • Review opportunities to allow for reallocation of project funds to those closer to completion
  • Continue the “District 6 Pothole Patrol” to proactively identify needed street repairs
  • Provide easy access to ongoing status reports of projects in the planning, construction and completion phases within the district

Traffic

The growing population in San Diego, the deterioration of our streets and the lack of funding to interconnect traffic signals has lead to an increase in traffic congestion within our neighborhoods. Since a great number of our major thoroughfares are built out, we must be creative in how we identify solutions that will reduce congestion. This includes utilizing new technologies and partnering with local businesses that may be able to increase carpool opportunities for employees living and working within the district.

GOAL: Reduce congestion on neighborhood streets and promote alternative transportation options.

Objectives:

  • Advocate for funding of signal optimization for traffic lights throughout the district
  • Develop an official community transportation committee comprised of local businesses, residents and stakeholders
  • Evaluate and promote alternative transportation methods such as bike sharing, vanpools, and increased transit options
  • Work with the Metropolitan Transit Service (MTS) to review existing routes, survey neighborhoods, and realign bus routes to better suit community needs
  • Review current traffic patterns and determine if signal reconfiguration/restriping is beneficial

Community Engagement

It is imperative that residents throughout the district have a voice and are engaged in the decisions that impact their neighborhood. This means interacting with their neighbors, participating in important discussions at community meetings and understanding the value of communicating with government and elected officials. But residents cannot do it on their own. Our city and elected officials must make it easier for residents to obtain data and have the resources available to participate in government.

GOAL: Increase the transparency of information for residents and provide an easy avenue for them to participate in community meetings and interact with government officials.

Objectives:

  • Encourage and facilitate neighborhood self-identification and create a database of service organizations and groups within each neighborhood in District 6 and ask if they would like to be provided information about important events/topics occurring
  • Develop a Resident’s Guide, available on-line and in print, that provides neighborhood and city specific contact information to address common residential issues
  • Provide outreach presentations to service and community organizations throughout the district about the NFC and the Resident’s Guide and encourage participation
  • Encourage participation in Nextdoor and provide updates on neighborhood specific issues when necessary
  • Hold quarterly neighborhood clean-ups throughout recreational areas across District 6
  • Create a centralized volunteer program database that allows groups and individuals seeking to volunteer to coordinate
  • Develop an NFC website that includes a database of service organizations in the district, calendar of neighborhood events, Resident’s Guide, contact information for government officials, and any other information that would be deemed useful for residents

Job Creation and Economic Growth

San Diego is defined by many different industries, including: innovation, military, tourism and our small businesses. District 6 transcends these pillars of San Diego’s economy. It is important that the City play a leadership role in ensuring businesses are able to grow and expand here in San Diego. With more than 100,000 individuals unemployed in the region, it is critical that our City fosters an environment in which businesses both small and large have the tools necessary to begin employing our residents again.

GOAL: Increase the ability of small businesses and entrepreneurs to locate and/or expand their businesses within the district and increase city support services.

Objectives:

  • Advocate for expansion of our Economic Growth Division and Business Improvement District support services
  • Dedicate at least one (1) District 6 staff member to hold the position of small business liaison to assist business owners with city issues
  • Partner with business organizations to host quarterly small business forums to identify common growth initiatives and provide assistance for implementation
  • Promote internships between businesses and students/individuals seeking to gain experience in the private sector
  • Promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) programs sponsored by the education and workforce community
  • Promote workforce development programs specifically offered to veterans
  • Continue to expand partnership between the tourism industry and restaurants to advocate for promotion of “San Diego Craft Beers” in businesses and establishing more educational tours for visitors
  • Coordinate between brewery owners and property owners within Miramar area to identify strategic partnerships to further increase the number of breweries

Public Safety

The paramount responsibility of our city government is to provide for the safety of its residents. As the city’s fiscal problems persisted, investment in basic public safety services declined. While funding for our police department is left to our elected leaders at City Hall, there are a number of steps residents can take to protect themselves from being a victim of neighborhood crime. Additionally, canyons weave throughout District 6 and often located right next to homes. It is important residents are prepared and are helping neighbors in case of an emergency.

GOAL: Increase awareness and use of tools residents can use to increase safety in their neighborhood.

Objectives:

  • Increase number of Neighborhood Watch street captains throughout the district
  • Identify opportunities to assist in the funding of new Neighborhood Watch signs for newly created programs
  • Utilize social media to provide basic crime prevention tips to residents
  • Increase distribution of crime statistics for each neighborhood to inform residents of what is occurring
  • Increase the number of residents participating in Community Emergency Response Team certification
  • Develop an Emergency Response Council in each neighborhood in District 6 to prepare for disaster response
  • Improve fire safety throughout the district by facilitating neighborhood resident training and cooperation with Fire Department programs
  • Review the feasibility of Neighborhood Code Compliance volunteer teams to handle minor infractions
  • Evaluate opportunities to update pet restrictions to designated “Cool Zones” in city facilities

Education

District 6 includes two San Diego County school districts: the San Diego Unified and Poway Unified School Districts. While the City of San Diego and its elected officials don’t have a direct role in the development of the curriculum taught to our students, our elected leaders play a vital role in ensuring we have an environment by which our children can grow and thrive. Given the right atmosphere and partnerships, students can focus on their studies and obtaining the skills necessary to fill the positions we are working so hard to bring to San Diego.

GOAL: Advocate for safe neighborhoods and expansion of programs that will allow students to obtain skills necessary fill good-paying jobs.

Objectives:

  • Continue to develop relationships between schools and local companies to develop and expand STEM programs
  • Explore options to expand partnerships with other venues and non-profits to provide before- and after-school programs
  • Encourage student participation in mentoring and job training programs offered by local companies and trade associations

Neighborhood Specific Objectives

Each of the goals listed above have been further broken down by each neighborhood. Listed are specific actions (also known as objectives) the city and each neighborhood can take to help accomplish each goal. These actions are not the only ones that may be taken, and the NFC will be consistently looking for input regarding additional actions that may be taken.

Clairemont

Objectives:

  • Review opportunities to create an off-leash dog area at Olive Grove Park
  • Continue to advocate for allocation of funding for Balboa Avenue Revitalization Action Program projects
  • Partner with programs and seek out resources to address homelessness in Tecolote Canyon

Kearny Mesa

Objectives:

  • Work with business owners, community leaders and city staff to promote the “Convoy District” as a top tourist destination in San Diego
  • Review opportunities to increase floor-area ratio within planning group area

Mira Mesa

Objectives:

  • Evaluate possibility of creating a “Civic Center” within Mira Mesa Community Park area, including outreach to residents about future of the Epicentre and Senior Center prior to the extension of any city leases
  • Review opportunities to utilize public/private partnership with local universities to commence a Community Plan Update
  • Evaluate the feasibility of creating a “Mira Mesa Community Newspaper” and website through sponsorship/grant opportunities
  • Facilitate discussion between the Parks and Recreation department and the community to facilitate public/private partnerships for park and playground improvements, to prevent future problems and roadblocks such as those encountered with the installation of shade structures at Westview Neighborhood park
  • Open a dialogue between the California High-Speed Rail Authority, City and County government, local community groups and residents, regarding the Escondido to San Diego segment of the rail line and any potential negative impacts to Miramar college, residents and local businesses

Park Village

Objectives:

  • Evaluate options for additional exit(s) to be used during disasters/evacuations
  • Identify funding opportunities to beautify medians
  • Encourage greater reporting & compliance of code enforcement, especially as they apply to residential issues.
  • Create opportunities for greater community engagement among Park Village residents. Identify opportunities to involve Park Village residents in other district issues/events.
  • Create greater awareness and accountability among Park Village residents to report crime to allow North Eastern Police Station to appropriately respond & add more patrol based on accurately reported needs.

Sorrento Valley

Objectives:

  • Advocate for public/private partnership with the homeowners association to develop “Overlook Park”
  • Evaluate possible additional traffic calming measures to reduce speeding along Sorrento Valley Boulevard and Calle Cristobal (e.g. speed meters or traffic patrols)
  • Improve fire safety by establishing local fire-safety/fire-proofing classes, encouraging Fire Department home reviews for safety evaluation and tips, and assess the benefit of yearly brush management on City land in canyons.
  • Increase Sorrento Valley neighborhood engagement by supporting their self-identification efforts including the placement of Sorrento Valley neighborhood signs at neighborhood entry points and investigating the renovation of mis-identified signs and banners.