The San Diego Free Press receives emails about quality of life issues from residents across the city and county. These issues receive little if any media coverage and inadequate attention from policy makers and enforcement agencies. We have decided to provide a civic forum for those issues in our weekly Street Beat column.
Sherman Heights Street Conditions
Sherman Heights resident Remy Bermúdez sent the following email to Councilman Alvarez, Mayor Faulkner and Council President Gloria:
This is a plea for a concerted effort and collaboration among all three of you and the responsible key City department(s) to immediately repair Market Street from where downtown leaves and where the southeast communities begin, a stretch of approximately 4 to 5 blocks.
Councilman Alvarez, I thank you for noting that our streets deny access to bicyclist and community businesses… You state, “Our local streets often have limitations that prevent customers from finding a space to park their car or bike or are so restrictive that customers are prohibited from having the time necessary to patronize a local business. These restrictions create areas of our neighborhoods in which economic development is difficult. As a part of my GrowSD plan, I have begun an analysis of current parking, public transit, and biking restrictions to ensure they are meeting the needs of our local neighborhood and I need your help.”
One such impoverished street is Market Street from 19th to 22nd. It’s condition is shameless– pot holes, severe, wide cracks. I’ve been requesting its repair time and again since 2010 and every time Councilman Alvarez sends me an e-mail about improving the condition of our streets.
… I invite you to drive that stretch of the corridor and experience the bumpy ride, while your vehicle shakes through the cracks, crevices and potholes. I also invite you to join forces and make this a win-win situation for all involved, especially our community residents, business owners and potential clientele.
I believe that it is high time to repair it. As we face west, Market street is the connection to downtown. …Facing east, Market Street is the beginning of the Sherman Heights Historic District and the connecting corridor to many community businesses through South East San Diego communities.
Something has got to be done immediately before the City is sued over damaged cars, damaged massed transit vehicles, damaged safety and emergency vehicles, punctured tires and injured bicyclists. The answer is in your hands. And, our Sherman Heights community residents and those using the Market Street corridor on a daily basis would appreciate it.
SDG&E’s High Pressure Gas Lines and Mid-City Schools
City Heights resident John Stump writes:
SDG&E rushes to replace miles of high pressure gas lines that they cannot find safety records on! Explosive gas lines pass through several City school campuses. This 10/9/14 Union Tribune article “Pipeline upgrades kick off in Mission Valley” is about how SDG&E is fast fixing high pressure pipelines that they cannot find safety records on. The problem is that the other end of this pipeline runs into the highly populated mid-city neighborhoods of Normal Heights, Kensington, City Heights, and Southeastern.
The pipeline passes through or directly adjacent to 6 San Diego schools– Wilson Middle, Central Elementary, Florence Joiner, Clark Middle, Hamilton Elementary and Webster.
How Safe is Artificial Turf?
Pacific Beach resident Micaela (Mic) Porte and her family write:
This recent NBC news article “How Safe is the Artificial Turf Your Child Plays On” about the potential hazards of artificial turf …[raises] the serious concern of the perils of installing this suspected toxic hazard in our schools, play yards, and parks. In my neighborhood, Pacific Beach Middle School and Mission Bay High School are considering proposed upgrades of the schools’ athletic fields in the form of artificial turf.
The basic component of artificial turf is old tires, the decomposition of which is toxic, especially in the sun and elevated temperatures, to the air and ground. Our proximity to the ocean, bay and marsh, in flood zones, is also an environmental concern. …Perhaps the renovation tax dollars for our schools would be best served in correct maintenance of the existing natural, organic, earth/grass playing fields for our children.
Editor Note: The emails we received have been edited for clarity and length.
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