Mesa Verde Community Park 032219

Remarks Before City Council on the New Parks Master Plan

These remarks were delivered, in condensed form for time, before San Diego City Council on Tuesday, Aug. 3rd, 2021.

Good afternoon, I’m Tommy Hough. I live in Mira Mesa.

I truly want this plan that’s up for consideration today to give our city and its residents great parks.

Here in Mira Mesa, we’re already adding some 7,000 housing units – not residents, but units – to our community over the next 10 years by the time Stone Creek in Carroll Canyon is completed.

We need to make sure we’ve got park space that isn’t just adequate, but more than adequate for the volume of new neighbors we expect to be welcoming into our community.

For the moment, we seem to be in good shape with the Three Roots development at Camino Santa Fe, but the Stone Creek project is a much bigger endeavor, and considerably more in jeopardy regarding park acreage, despite whatever developer impact fees may be applied.

The points system recommendation that’s being considered in the new Parks Master Plan today will ultimately incentivize smaller parks for more people.

I fully support an equitable approach to parks in areas that have been historically underserved. That’s needed. It’s overdue, and I’m thrilled to hear the excitement and support for the new Chollas Creek community park on this call. That’s a tremendous ecological, biological, and recreational resource here in our city.

But I do feel it’s unreasonable to create a new program that cuts fees below what a particular project has already been calculated to cost.

This could short change a lot of communities around the city, not just Mira Mesa, by enabling developers to provide fewer acres for parks than merited by the volume of residents we expect to house.

I say Neighborhoods First again and again. Why would we ever argue in favor of a dynamic in which children run and play and families recreate on an eighth of an acre when ordinarily, given the population density of an area or development, those same kids and families would’ve previously had an acre or more to enjoy and utilize?

Please take these concerns into consideration today, and let’s finally get Rose Creek established as a city park too. Thank you.