Residents angered by the Chula Vista City Council’s vote to change the general plan to accommodate a 284-condo/rental development are gathering forces. At an October 17 meeting, residents opposed to the Lake Pointe development said they are determined to take the issue to the ballot box, if necessary.
Although the city council passed the zone change in September, the developer, Integral Communities, has been working with residents to modify the project.
Opponents of the development are using several strategies. At the October 17 meeting, they invited council member Patricia Aguilar, the only member who voted against the general plan change.
Aguilar pointed out that the general plan is a social pact; it represents a vision for the community. The newly rezoned area was supposed to be retail and commercial, including a “restaurant row.” Now the area is zoned 11.6 residential and .6 commercial.
The group asked Aguilar to provide them with information about the city’s “pay-to-play” ordinances. Opponents are concerned that Integral Communities had undue influence on the rezoning procedure.
Council member Pamela Bensoussan, who is up for reelection in November, received $1900 in campaign contributions from Integral Communities’ principals and wives of principals.
The Lake Pointe opposition group has grown significantly in the past month and established a Facebook page. Group members pledged $100 each toward engaging an attorney to carry their efforts forward.
Resident Barney Reed said in an October 20 interview, “The city is virtually ignoring stakeholders who collectively have almost $2 billion in home investments.”
Reed recently obtained the traffic study used by the developers to motivate the zone change. “I believe the information that was presented to the council was misleading and incomplete. When you look at the average daily trips [traffic] analysis, the council was only presented with the numbers from the low end of the charts…. Developers have not included any traffic flow coming from Otay Lakes Road through Lake Crest Drive. If you use logical reasoning, traffic that crosses the Salt Creek watershed will support a retail/commercial complex, as well as the 7727 resident homes in the two-mile radius.”
Real estate broker Adriana Santisteban said in an October 21 interview that she can’t understand why the city approved the project so fast. Santisteban said the project’s sited 12.2 acres “is the best location in Eastlake; I was looking forward to dining there and looking out over the lake.”