OPINION: La Jolla resident says 30-foot building limit under attack

By David Little
Resident, La Jolla

The 30-foot building limit is under attack. This limit was initiated as a grass-roots initiative that was approved overwhelmingly in a citywide vote in November of 1972.

This voter-approved ordinance was appealed and ended in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court rejected the appeal, saying that a community can zone itself as it sees fit, thus approving the 30-foot height limit. After Proposition D was approved by the voters, the City Council added a complementary ordinance to accommodate sloping lots but still keep the 30-foot limit. There is no question that the complementary ordinance is an adjunct to Prop. D and the two ordinances cannot be separated. Had Prop. D not been approved by the voters, there would not be a second ordinance and therefore no 30-foot height restriction. The purpose of Prop. D was to prevent our beaches from being walled off by high-rise buildings and buildings higher than three stories.

The La Jolla community groups are currently being asked to approve a “variance” to the 30-foot height limitation ordinances. Granting such a “variance” to a voter-approved ordinance places the community groups in an untenable position – that is, they would be granting exceptions to an ordinance passed by the people. The community planning groups are ill-advised to start acting as a deity and deciding who can exceed the ordinance and who can’t.

Furthermore, they have no approved threshold for the amount of additional height. Is 2 additional feet OK but 3 feet too much? If 2 or 3 feet is OK, then how about an 8-foot “variance”? That would be another story.

It is my opinion that the planning groups invite a lawsuit if they begin to issue variances to a voter-approved ordinance that has been tested in court. I have been on the CPA board of trustees for nearly six years, and I cannot remember ever being asked to grant a variance to Prop. D or its companion ordinance. I am also not aware that any other Coastal Community group – Pacific Beach or Mission Beach, etc. – has been asked to approve a height “variance.”

Please come out to the La Jolla Community Planning Association meetings and help maintain the coastal zone building-height limit approved by the voters. The meetings are held the first Thursday of each month at the La Jolla Recreation Center at 6 p.m.

Related posts:

  1. OPINION: La Jolla a community of contrasts
  2. OPINION: Pet poo can destroy paradise
  3. OPINION: A proposal for a ‘stimulus tax’ for our state
  4. OPINION: Lack of information is frustrating
  5. OPINION: Pine nut prices are nutty

Short URL: http://www.lajollalight.com/?p=2612

Posted by Halie Johnson on Aug 31, 2010. Filed under News, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Leave a Reply

La Jolla Community Calendar

Facebook

Bottom Buttons 1

Bottom Buttons 2

Bottom Buttons 3

Bottom Buttons 4

Bottom Buttons 5

Bottom Buttons 6

RSS North Coastal News

  • Motorcyclist killed in accident near Del Mar Fairgrounds July 21, 2014
    The motorcyclist killed in a two-vehicle crash near the Del Mar Fairgrounds over the weekend was identified July 21 as a 22-year-old Escondido man. Alexander Mackenzie Williams was headed west on Via de la Valle near Jimmy Durante Boulevard at a high rate of speed shortly before 6:30 p.m. Sunday, July 20, when he lost control and swerved into oncoming traffi […]
  • Bestselling author Jojo Moyes discusses her novels with fans at Del Mar Country Club luncheon July 21, 2014
    “On my last book tour, I had a day off in Portland and it was very nice,” said bestselling novelist Jojo Moyes at a luncheon recently held at the Del Mar Country Club. Then she paused, looked around and added, “But I can tell you a day off in La Jolla is better.” The British author definitely knows how to please an audience – as evidenced not just by the war […]
  • Solana Beach employee featured at City Hall Gallery July 21, 2014
    From Monday through Friday, David Kloz works as a management analyst for the city of Solana Beach. When he’s not at work, Kloz is often outside with a camera. A collection of his photos is currently on exhibit at his workplace, the Solana Beach City Hall. It’s the amateur photographer’s first ever show. “I’m curious to see what the response is going to be,” […]