An excellent article regarding the recent residential building boom taking shape in downtown San Diego (a not too distant topic here on this very blog) appeared recently on the San Francisco Weekly Website.
Writer Matt Smith surmises that San Diego and San Diegans themselves are finally beginning to realize both the need and desirability of some forms of dense developments -- specifically, mixed-use residential towers. Moreover, he sees the recent wave of downtown development potentially acting as a savior for suburban Southern California:
"A mini-Manhattan sprouting at the edge of San Diego Bay offers hope as medicine for what ails California."
Without a doubt, San Diego area builders, buyers and bureacrats alike have all come to better accept such development, which again, is atypical within suburban-minded Southern California. Our hope is that such mixed-use developments will help bring balance back into overly suburban developmental patterns afflicting Southern California.
Much of downtown San Diego's recent high-rise residential boom came via a developer (Nat Bosa) who did much the same over the past 20 years in Vancouver, B.C., Canada:
Vancouver officials beckoned developers to fallow industrial yards near downtown ... Nat Bosa, an Italian immigrant who entered the building trade 30 years ago as a laborer, was among those who foresaw that Canadians would pay good money to live in such a place. "My prediction in 1990 was, in 10 years, it will be fashionable to live in downtown Vancouver, and in 15, it will be a great place to live," he says. "People now love it."
As prime, cheap land began to disappear from central Vancouver, Bosa and other Canadian developers looked south to San Diego and saw another abandoned, decrepit downtown ... "I felt it was just a fabulous place, with a great climate. I thought it was ready for what I call urbanization," Bosa says. "It was lacking on one big thing -- more people."
Sounds as though downtown Riverside could use a bit of Mr. Bosa's enthusiasm and ideas...
- RaincrossSquare.com - Downtown San Diego