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Reimagining Mission Valley: The Heart of Measure D

by Debbie Benrey, published

San Diego, CALIF.- Former City Councilwoman Donna Frye is leading the effort to pass Measure D in San Diego.

Measure D would transform the way tourism dollars are allocated, and ensure a more transparent process for voters, but the lasting legacy for the city might lie in its effort to reimagine Mission Valley, a community Frye represented on the Council for 8 years.

Former State Senator Steve Peace grew up in Allied Gardens and watched the transformation from dairy farms to suburban sprawl in the 1960’s. Peace notes that is when the tourism industry created Hotel Circle.

From his backyard he watched San Diego State College grow into a full fledged University.

Now, in 2016, Measure D aims to replace the outdated and costly Qualcomm Stadium with acres of park land and room for SDSU expansion. That component of Measure D strikes a positive cord for longtime San Diegans like Frye and Peace.

“Measure D protects the San Diego River and local colleges and universities by authorizing the city to sell whatever portion of the Qualcomm Stadium site the Chargers don’t use — whether only a portion because they stay, or all of it because they leave — for transit-oriented park, open-space and higher-education purposes,” says Frye.

The alternative is a massive multifaceted development, including more hotels and over 6,000 condominiums. It’s an idea that many worry would gridlock traffic in the valley.

Measure D's supporters include the League of Conservation Voters, the League of Women Voters, San Diego Taxpayers Advocate, the local Democratic Party, and State Senate Higher Education Budget Chairman Marty Block.

As for the San Diego County Democratic Party and their support for Measure D. The party issued a statement reading, "The Democratic Party of San Diego is glad to endorse Measure D. Measure D protects taxpayers by prohibiting public subsidies for sports stadiums. Measure D is a responsible tourism plan that means more funding for tourism impacted resources like police, fire, and road repairs… Make the hoteliers pay their fare share, vote YES ON MEASURE D"

San Diego City Council member David Alvarez was one of the first supporters of Measure D. Alvarez said the decision to support the measure was a simple one. "All San Diegans need to understand that Yes on Measure D protects taxpayers by providing no public dollars for a stadium. Our love for our football team shouldn't sack voters with financial risks. Voting Yes on Measure D shifts the risk to hoteliers and developers," Alvarez said. "Measure D also contemplates Mission Valley and will require the Qualcomm Stadium site be used for higher education and eco friendly purposes. I urge the voters of San Diego to support Measure D."

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