De Anza Point is the Key to ReWilding Mission Bay

As you might have seen in Jim Peugh’s piece in Times of San Diego this weekend, ReWild Mission Bay’s feasibility study demonstrates that a plan to increase the volume of wetlands in the northeast corner of Mission Bay is not only feasible, but is the most cost-effective option for the city when sea level rise and water quality are factored into the equation.

Unfortunately, the city appears to be moving forward with plans for De Anza Point that would involve an extension of the current Campland lease, which would enable Campland to move east across Rose Creek to the now-abandoned De Anza Cove mobile home park, on the “boot” of land that juts out into the bay.

A newly-entrenched Campland on De Anza Point could be problematic, as the point is critical to the success of the wetland restoration plans outlined in the ReWild feasibility study proposals – especially the opportunity to address the poor water quality that continually plagues that portion of the bay.

Our ReWild coalition believes a slower, more deliberative process on the part of the city is warranted in order to best consider the merits of the ReWild proposal, particularly the “Wildest” option, and to ensure our neighbors’ concerns regarding water quality, sea level rise, and access to our shoreline are being thoughtfully considered.

If you believe Mission Bay belongs to all San Diegans, please join ReWild Mission Bay this Tuesday, June 4, at 6 p.m. at the Mission Bay Park Committee meeting at the Santa Clara Recreation Center, located at 1008 Santa Clara Place in Mission Beach, on the far western side of the bay.

ReWild was on the agenda to make a presentation to the committee on the merits of our study, but on Friday, May 31, we were informed our presentation would be bumped to July – while Campland and the city were both kept on the agenda for the June meeting.

To be clear, backroom deals and manufactured emergencies are not going to improve the water quality of the northeast corner of Mission Bay, make its shoreline more accessible, increase recreation options, create more wetlands to ensure the survival of native plants and animals, or make our bay and park more resilient to climate change and the rising sea levels we know are on the way.

Campland is, unfortunately, manufacturing a crisis they hope to benefit from – at the expense of the future of our bay and our park – by proposing to extend their current lease and negotiate a new lease on De Anza Point, after an RV facility operator opted to end its management contract with the city. That’s hardly an emergency or a crisis requiring drastic action.

The existing 260 campsites at the De Anza RV Park simply require a short-term lease for operation, and can be managed under one if the city wishes to issue it. We don’t need a five-year lease to “solve” this. The city is notorious for making bad lease deals again and again. Why are city leaders lining up to do the same thing here – instead of considering other options for the long-term future of the bay and our park? What’s the rush?

UCSD and the ReWild Mission Bay coalition have offered the city an alternate option, complete with an economic breakdown, for the restoration of Mission Bay Park that will benefit all San Diegans, as well as the 14 million tourists the city draws every year.

We have an opportunity to revitalize Mission Bay into a civic showpiece and destination on par with Balboa Park, with world-class recreation, greater bayfront access, guest lodging, eco-tourism opportunities, increased accessibility, cleaner water quality and built-in climate change resiliency. Why doesn’t the city want to consider it?

When politicians don’t hear from the public, they assume everything is okay. So take your experience, your stories and your passion for Mission Bay and let our elected officials what is acceptable, and what is not. They need to hear from you.

Wear your teal-colored ReWild shirt and join us this Tuesday, June 4, at 6 p.m. at the Mission Bay Park Committee to show your support for ReWild Mission Bay at the Santa Clara Recreation Center. This is the moment we need you.

And join us Thursday, June 6, at the Clairemont Town Council at Clairemont High School at 6:30 p.m., and at the C3 Mission Bay Park Community Planning Unveiling this Saturday, June 8, at 10 a.m. at Mission Bay High School Library.

Photo courtesy of EIC.