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Waterfront group strikes deal with JMI on Ballpark Village

The Working Waterfront Group, an entity that has grown out of the Port Tenants Association, said it has reached an accord with JMI Realty and Lennar Urban Division on the Ballpark Village development across the Park Boulevard extension from Petco Park.

Working Waterfront, along with numerous other downtown groups, expressed concerns about placing as many as 1,300 multifamily residences in high-rise towers in proximity to the operations of the 10th Avenue Marine Terminal. Working Waterfront formed last year to address the issues posed by residential movement toward longstanding industrial businesses and related facilities.

The agreement reached included condominium deeds for the residences but also has an easement that recognizes and protects terminal activities located within 500 feet of the master-planned development.

"The agreement also covers condominium buyers being notified that they are purchasing a home adjacent to an industrial area that has industrial activity, which includes around-the-clock operations, lighting, noise, dust, train and truck traffic," the Waterfront Group said.

A date hasn't been set, but Working Waterfront reported that JMI will co-sponsor a major regional symposium that focuses on gentrification, co-location and protecting industrial lands.

"JMI will also endorse a statement supporting both the economic value of the working waterfront and the port and a transparent and comprehensive effort to provide a regional plan for the preservation and expansion of a vigorous maritime port," Working Waterfront added.

The coalition also urges the San Diego City Council at its Oct. 18 meeting to approve the Ballpark Village project and a recently agreed upon Community Benefits Agreement between the developer JMI Realty/Lennar and numerous community, environmental and labor organizations. That agreement angered Centre City Development Corp. officials who felt they were left out of the loop. CCDC also questioned the wisdom in the revised plan of proposing placing at least some of the affordable housing on land owned by St. Vincent de Paul in another part of the East Village.

While CCDC wasn't happy about meetings that it claims were covert, it supports the Working Waterfront's efforts to recognize both the port's and residential needs, according to Donna Alm, CCDC spokeswoman.

The San Diego City Council is scheduled to consider the Ballpark Village plan on Oct. 18, but the date could change given questions about the location of affordable housing that still remain.

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