Forty Years and Counting

Pacificas Building Activity in the Last Decade

Here are some highlights of building activity in Pacifica over the past decade or so. We think its a pretty realistic snapshot of progress, or the lack thereof.
Many of the non-controversial projects noted here are ones that help make life a little better for Pacificas residents, such as the stop signs and the Sharp Park Road widening. There has also been a fair amount of large-scale housing built, even though most people in Pacifica claim to be opposed to housing. While a few commercial projects have been approved, many were simply upgrades of existing businesses. A fair number of other proposals did not pass muster with Pacifica leaders, or voters, who retain considerably control over the fate of our community.
Although voters have not supported specific revenue-generating commercial projects in recent years, people have said they would support the right project. Ironically, a majority of voters in Pacifica have also rejected increased taxes that would help offset the lack of a strong financial base in what remains essentially a bedroom community. As the housing market heats up in the Bay Area, Pacificas home prices are also rising. The city is already seeing a slight rise in revenue from increased property values, and this will continue in a gradual way as pre-Proposition 13 homes are sold to new owners, shifting the property tax revenue.
We dont know what the future holds for Pacifica, but for the rest of 1997, well be trying to elicit responses from our readers about the State of Pacifica on this, its 40th birthday since incorporation in 1957. Well be calling the series 40 Years and Counting Let us know what you think. Send comments to Chris Hunter, C/O Pacifica Tribune, P.O. Box 1189, Pacifica, California 94044.

Commercial projects that never materialized

  • Mori Point Conference Center - Voters approved the project, but city permits were challenged by grassroots legal challenge and property eventually foreclosed on.
  • DBO Shopping Center with upscale oceanfront housing at Quarry Public vote deleted housing element, killing the project.
  • Sea Garden Arts Center near Pacifica State Beach Defeated at the polls twice with strong opposition from surfing community.
  • Pedro Point Outlet Mall - Developer discouraged from proceeding at City Council study session due to pressure from Pedro Point neighborhood.
  • Manor Shell Car Wash - and service station upgrade Planning Commission approved, but decision overturned by City Council on appeal due to traffic concerns.
  • Palmetto Avenue brew pub - Rejected due to neighborhood concerns.
  • Card Club on Mori Point - Overwhelmingly rejected by voters.
  • Burger King on Highway 1 - at Reina del Mar Developer did not pursue plans after initial concerns about traffic circulation and access off Highway 1.

Commercial projects approved or upgraded

  • Rockaway Plaza and Quarry Cove Retail complexes in Rockaway Beach Redevelopment Area.
  • Renovation of Lighthouse Hotel (proposed outdoor seating deck faces opposition)
  • Pacifica Athletic Club built at former Pedro Point Safeway
  • Pedro Point Lighthouse Cafe under construction
  • Renovation of Pacific Manor Safeway underway
  • Sea Bowl upgrade
  • Service stations throughout town upgraded

Housing approved or upgraded

  • Marvilla Estates built at old Pedro Valley School site
  • Saltaire housing development at old Crespi School site on Fassler
  • Troglia Terrace five-lot subdivision in Rockaway Beach
  • Mariners Point townhouses approved and built
  • Senior housing complex at Good Shepherd built
  • Skyridge housing off Skyline Boulevard under construction
  • Pacific View Housing built
  • Wave Crest apartments upgraded, renamed Sea Point
  • Infill housing around town, generally upscale
  • Large-scale or controversial housing and other projects
  • Milagra Terrace approved by city, but overturned by voters through referendum
  • Ventana del Mundo five-lot subdivision on Manor Drive approved by the city, but overturned by voters.
  • Chuck Gusts single-family home on agriculturally zoned land in Vallemar Rejected by public vote. The council later changed Growth Control Ordinance to allow similar proposals in the future without a vote. GCO reaffirmed by voters.
  • Verbum Dei religious retreat off Higgins Denied by Planning Commission. Application withdrawn.
Commercial projects approved, but not yet built
  • Sea Rock Inn 60-unit upscale hotel planned for The Rock above Fassler Avenue
  • Days Inn expansion
  • Paul Chakkaparks hotel project at Crespi and Highway 1
  • Beauty parlor expansion on Pedro Point
  • Linda Mar Shopping Center renovation and Linda Mar Safeway expansion
  • Holiday Inn Express

Tax-related campaigns and votes

  • 1992 Recall election Four of five councilmembers recalled after adopting unpopular Landscaping and Lighting Assessment which would have charged average homeowner $72 a year, with larger property owners paying more.
  • Defeat of proposed 3 percentage point increase in PG&E Utility Users Tax in 1994
  • Defeat of expanded Utility Users Tax in 1997
  • Public works/Public-private partnerships approved
  • The $42 million Calera Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant Construction began in 1997. No commercial revenue projected. Possible bike path attraction and field trips for students.
  • Pedro Point Bridge connecting Linda Mar Boulevard with Pedro Point.
  • Sharp Park Road widened and bike path installed
  • Paving projects throughout the city
  • Right turn lane into Rockaway Beach
  • Sharp Park promenade and seawall
  • New corporation yard created at old Ed Cordero site
  • Resource Center expansion
  • Highway 1 interim barrier built
  • San Pedro Flood Control design approved, but project not yet built
  • San Pedro Creek Fish Ladder
  • Aircraft Noise insulation project of houses in Fairmont
  • Utility undergrounding, new stop signs installed, etc.
  • Sharp Park ballfield upgrades
  • Rockaway Beach Direction sign
  • San Marlo Way boardwalk