Del Mar Mesa maintenance assessment district nearly established


DelMarMesaBy Suzanne Evans


John Eardensohn, of Latitude Engineering, defined the scope of Del Mar Mesa’s maintenance assessment district plan to provide trail maintenance, future park upgrades as well as common area landscaping and maintenance at the Del Mar Mesa planning board’s Oct 14 meeting. Still to be completed is an engineer’s study, designating residents to be in charge, determining the cost, and setting in motion the voting process.

Latitude, previously working closely with Del Mar Mesa on land planning issues, discussed MAD adherence to the Del Mar Community Plan’s objective of preserving the area’s rural character, such as using softer materials like asphalt for berms at the bottom of slopes as opposed to concrete curbs and gutters, putting up natural wooden railings, using softer, low-pressure {pale pink] sodium lights, and MAD – maintained decomposed granite for trails not maintained by the city.

The board is determined to turn a deserted patch of weeds in Del Mar Mesa adjacent to Duck Pond Ranch into a vital park where children can safely enjoy sports and play in tot lots. Horses can rest at hitch rails while residents relax in grassy areas with picnic tables, restrooms, a one-half basketball court, and horse trailer parking.

At the end of the process, Latitude will present the engineer’s report to the city; Del Mar Mesa will send out ballots to residents, and if residents agree by a simple 51 per cent majority to form the MAD, it will go forward. The ballot will be mailed to residents and is not a part of the general election ballot. The city could give its go-ahead in November or December, and initial work will begin in January 2011. The cut-off date to finalize the MAD is August 2011. After the city’s approval of the MAD, the Mesa board’s subcommittee will meet to discuss MAD options.

“It is critical to invest in the community,” Levitt has insisted, urging consistency in owners’ maintenance of their properties according to the standards in the Del Mar Mesa Master Plan. “$500 a year will come back in value of spades.”