The Coast News Group
Opinion, Community Commentary

Letter: Marea Village approval bypassed tribes

Dear Editor,

In August 2022, commissioners Donne Brownsey and Caryl Hart of the California Coastal Commission each filed appeals with the state agency regarding the Encinitas City Council’s approval of the proposed Marea Village project that would be located on the west side of Highway 101, just south of La Costa Avenue. 

The developers of Marea Village, Encinitas Beach Land Venture, LLC, applied to build 94 residential units, an underground parking structure, four mixed-use commercial buildings, two commercial buildings and a 34-room hotel.  

The appeals filed by the state commissioners primarily focus on the issues of traffic, public access to the coast and affordability of hotel rooms and residential units.

The project will result in an increase of 1,173 average daily trips. The developers method for what constitutes “low cost” appears to be inconsistent with how the Coastal Commission typically determines “low,” potentially resulting in inflated low-cost rates. 

A meeting between the developers and the California Coastal Commission is scheduled for early June.

Residents of Encinitas and Leucadia, led by Friends of Seabluffe, previously filed an appeal with the Encinitas City Council that was denied.  

The residents’ previous appeal voiced concerns related to bluff instability; pollution runoff and overdevelopment in northwest Leucadia, such as the 130-room Alila Marea Beach Resort adjacent to the proposed Marea Village development site; a new 72-unit apartment complex at the corner of Vulcan Avenue and La Costa Avenue, and several other nearby projects in development. 

During the meeting when Friends of Seabluffe’s appeal was denied, the City Council apologized for not following the procedure for notifying the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians in a timely manner, as required, regarding the development of Marea Village on potentially culturally sensitive land and indicated they would try to do better in the future. 

The City Council refused to consider the San Pasqual Band of Mission Indians arguments about not notifying them about the project in advance, as required, because the Indians were not a party to the appeal filed by Friends of Seabluffe. 

Tom Alper


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