Without permission to increase their square footage, the homeowners won't be building up.
  • Without permission to increase their square footage, the homeowners won't be building up.
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In a blow against the gentrification of Ocean Beach, architect Elizabeth Young's plans for a 400-foot variance on a planned three-story residence were shot down by the Ocean Beach Planning Board on February 6.

The home, in the 5000 block of West Point Loma Boulevard, is owned by the Douma family. The single-story house is a few doors down from the entryway to Dogs Beach and shares the block with two three-story homes, one of them nearly completed. The unanimous vote against granting the variance means the Doumas won’t be building up anytime soon.

While some community members agreed with the board, at least ten neighbors showed up in support of the Doumas’ request and to vouch for them on a personal basis. One neighbor suggested, in a somewhat joking manner, that the city should send a limousine to bring the Doumas to the meeting because of how much they care about O.B.

A member of the board read a letter written to the board from mayor Bob Filner (entirety of letter can be read at OBRag.com), who is in support of the board's decision of a moratorium on the granting of variances.

This would have been the third property on West Point Loma Boulevard to have been granted a variance by the city, thus bypassing the O.B. Precise Plan, which the community put into place in 1975.

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SurfPuppy619 Feb. 9, 2013 @ 7:16 a.m.

You either grant the variances to ALL or deny them to all.

Granting TWO other variances, one of which is not even finished, and then denying this one reeks of cronyism and favoritism and has no place in a society that is supposed to treat everyone equal.


Dave Rice Feb. 9, 2013 @ 10:52 a.m.

As I understand it, the OBPB was against the other variances as well, but a different culture Downtown got them pushed through over the objections of the community...


SurfPuppy619 Feb. 9, 2013 @ 10:57 a.m.

Yes, these are arbitrary actions, where some are granted and others denied, and that is what is wrong, no matter who did the deed.


Burwell Feb. 9, 2013 @ 12:35 p.m.

The demo'd properties appear to be well-maintained rentals that fit within the character of the community. The houses that replaced them are massively overbuilt for the size of the lot and further shield the ocean from public view. I applaud Mayor Filner for his stand against the proliferation of McMansions in the beach areas. Filner is a man of courage for his willingness to enforce the building codes and zoning laws as they are written. The city should exercise its power of eminent domain and buy the other two McMansions and tear them down as they are out of scale for the community and should never have been built.


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