By Ben Locke, Alpine resident
January 31, 2017 (Alpine) -- Located at http://www.sandiegocounty.gov/pds/generalplan.html is the County website for the General Plan (GP). As you may have heard, a GP update will be taking place for Alpine over the next 18 months. The preamble to the GP states that it is: “…a framework for the future growth and development of the unincorporated areas of the County.” And that it “…is based on a set of guiding principles designed to protect the County’s unique and diverse natural resources and maintain the character of its rural and semi-rural communities. It reflects an environmentally sustainable approach to planning that balances the need for adequate infrastructure, housing, and economic vitality, while maintaining and preserving each unique community within the County, agricultural areas, and extensive open space.” Finally, it states that it: “…reflects the County’s commitment to a sustainable growth model that facilitates efficient development near infrastructure and services, while respecting sensitive natural resources and protection of existing community character in its extensive rural and semi-rural communities. The General Plan provides a renewed basis for the County’s diverse communities to develop Community Plans that are specific to and reflective of their unique character and environment consistent with the County’s vision for its future."
It should be clear to everyone, especially our local Alpine Planning Group, that there are some specifics they must adhere to during the upcoming 18-month process. First, and foremost, that Alpine’s recommendations MUST include protection for our natural resources and MUST maintain our rural and semi-rural nature. We moved here to Alpine to be out of the city and we want it to stay that way. It should also be clear to all, that the intent of the residents of Alpine is to keep development where there is the infrastructure to support it. We all know that developers would love to have the taxpayers pick up the tab for infrastructure (water, sewer, roads, fire/police protection, etc.) so that their development can move forward at affordable (to them) cost. We, in Alpine, must press the Planning Group, most of whom are either in the building trades or tied to them, to understand that in addition to wanting to maintain our rural nature, there is no viable reason we should be burdened with the cost of infrastructure that will only benefit a few.
In the next months, I think we should all keep a close eye on our planners and make sure they comply with OUR wishes, not anyone else’s. Get involved and stay informed.
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