Barrio Logan community housing campaign in full force
Those who favor the Barrio Logan community plan will emphasize the health risk to residents from pollution emanating from the shipyards. Those against fear the last ship repair business on the west coast hangs on the outcome of this election. As with all political campaigns, there are going to be exaggerations. A judge noted a few from the opponents, but not sufficient enough to stop this from going to the ballot.
“A lot of misinformation,” stated council member David Alvarez, “thousands and thousands of dollars are being spent to spread lies by former so-called leaders of our community who have no interest but their self interest at heart.”
Alvarez is also a Barrio Logan resident who is the lead spokesman for Yes on B and C. He’s apparently talking about former mayor Jerry Sanders, who now leads the Chamber of Commerce – which is taking the lead in opposing the ballot measure.
“The major shipbuilders in San Diego are funding things like the Chamber of Commerce. They pay bills, they basically pay for the salaries of people who work for the Chamber of Commerce and so they’re listening to who pays their bills.”
The Barrio Logan plan is to add 500 units of low-income housing and rezoning a 5 block area for commercial use, thus creating a buffer zone separating residents from the toxins used to repair ships.
“B and C will insure a healthier neighborhood and good planning, and therefore I urge San Diegans to vote Yes on B and C,” said Council President Todd Gloria. “I ask San Diegans to do that because I know that San Diegans support healthier neighborhoods; I know they support sensible planning principles.”
“I grew up in Barrio Logan,” said Alvarez. “I suffer from asthma as a result of the pollution of the bad use of industry next to homes which still exist today in Barrio Logan.”
This would seem to be exaggeration from the pro B and C side. The environmental impact report states that I-5 traffic is the primary source of air pollution in Barrio Logan. His ballot measure does nothing to alleviate the pollution that exists today, yet it calls for more housing to be built. Alvarez says this is not about today: it’s about the future.
“What this would do over the course of time, it would allow for the residents to be in one part of Barrio Logan – for industry to be in another part of Barrio Logan so they’re not intermingled. Plans are meant to be over the course of several years; nothing will change immediately today.”
The plan was passed with 5 Democrat votes on the City Council and touted as a compromise plan. Alvarez said the council could have eliminated all of the businesses, but chose instead to compromise.