Permit challenge to East Village Park project ‘Quartyard II’

EAST VILLAGE (KUSI) — City planning officials gave final approval Wednesday to the building of Quartyard II, an innovative urban park in East Village.

The project, first conceived by a group of students at the New School of Architecture and Design, was built with old shipping containers at Park and Market but closed in June when the property was turned over for re-development.

Last month, the agency that handles development matters granted a conditional use permit to a new site at the corner of 13th and Market. The proposal included tables, games, food and beverages, an off-leash dog area and a stage for live entertainment. Lt. Colonel (Ret.) David Gapp, who lives in the area decided to appeal the permit, saying the live music was not appropriate for the neighborhood. 

Gapp said while there were no residential buildings adjacent to the old Quartyard location, he said 2,000 people live in seven nearby buildings in the area around the new site. Gapp says many of those residents are in affordable housing.

“These almost 600 affordable housing residents, they can’t move,” Gapp said. 

The retired Air Force officer also says the scale of the project is wrong because the lot is about one-third the size of the original Quartyard.

“This is out of scale because there will be literally hundreds and hundreds of party goers and revelers at the live music events, and it’s an extremely small lot,” the colonel said.

The conditional use permit approved by a hearing officer last month allows Quartyard to host up to 5 hours of live music, 48 times a year.

The hearing officer also approved the playing of live music until 10 pm during the weekdays and 11 pm on Friday and Saturday.

According to Gapp, “Civic San Diego’s Planner recommended hours less than that.”

The opposition also came from the San Diego Police Department, which cited the combination of alcohol sales and live music, and how it would affect calls for service.

Philip Auchettl, who helped to build the first Quartyard says he is aware of the concerns about noise.

“Quartyard has a brand, but you know it’s adaptable. Ultimately, we’re a community project. If the public decides they don’t want this project, then we won’t do it.” Auchettl said. 

The board of Civic San Diego denied the permit appeal by a vote of 6-0. Quartyard II is expected to open later this year.

Categories: Local San Diego News