Del Mar expresses concerns about One Paseo

By Claire Harlin

The Del Mar City Council on June 4 ratified a letter to be sent to the City of San Diego raising concerns regarding “inappropriate densities” of the One Paseo project and the adverse effects those densities will have on traffic and visual character of the community.

One Paseo is a proposed mixed-use development for the nearly 24-acre site at the corner of Del Mar Heights Road and El Camino Real in Carmel Valley. The project includes construction of about 1.8 million gross square feet of development containing multi-family residential units, commercial space, office space and a 150-room hotel. Internal roadways and more than 4,000 parking spaces would be included and, as proposed, buildings would reach up to 10 stories in height.

The letter is in response to the recent release of a project Draft Environmental Impact Report (DEIR), which found that the project would significantly impact the surrounding area in terms of transportation, circulation, parking and character. According to the DEIR, these impacts would not be mitigated to a level that would be “less than significant.”

Del Mar is requesting additional traffic assessment, associated mitigation and that a project of similar land use be studied at much less density.

The letter states that One Paseo, as proposed, is “overly ambitious” in its attempt to become a “community village.”

It also points out that congestion on Del Mar Heights Road may impact Coast Highway and Camino del Mar, so the EIR would expand its study area to include those routes. The letter also states that One Paseo traffic will impact the nearly 3,000 staff, students and parents of the Torrey Pines High School community.

The letter also suggested exploring less dense alternatives.

“This project would create an island of urbanization in a community of relatively low-scale development,” the letter states. “The project would not be so much of a village but an over-intensified mixed-use development that would be located in an area of existing high vehicle traffic and minimal planned mass transit opportunities for the thousands of people who would be coming and going from corporate, retail, residential and hotel uses on a daily basis.”