Described by some as Point Loma's “hidden beach,” Kellogg's, also known as Mother's, is located behind Shelter Island in the La Playa area. It is a family beach and popular area for boat watching.
The condo-conversion project, which fronts on 405 San Antonio Ave., was an information item at Peninsula Community Planning Board's Jan. 19 meeting. Project architect Mike Morton gave a 15-minute presentation.
Morton described the project site as being in a medium-density area surrounded by large, multi-family units and five single-family homes along the beachfront at the end of Lawrence Street.
“The project allows 13 to 20 units and we are proposing nine,” said Morton. “Rather than having a bulky building, we're breaking it down into five smaller buildings. There will be underground parking with 21 spaces.”
The architect noted project amenities including sustainable landscaping and use of photovoltaic (solar) power, along with an open view corridor and two elevators. He added the project takes into account anticipated future sea-level rise.
Several Peninsulans questioned the project at the Jan. 19 PCPB meeting. Some insisted it would set a bad precedent putting multi-family on the beachfront and destroying the neighborhood's existing character.
“We need to think about people walking on that sandy beach, as well as families coming there who feel it's safe to bring their children,” argued one audience member.
Following the meeting, Don Sevrens, a PCPB board member speaking on his own behalf, noted the project was informational only and “has not reached the planning board or its Project Review subcommittee as yet.” He added city staff and the developer are “still resolving a myriad of details or problems called ‘cycle issues.’
"Some members of the board and the audience raised questions or concerns on various aspects: Closure of foot access to a public beach, a proposed sea wall (possibly not on the applicant's property), accelerated erosion as a result of the sea wall, a parking basement below sea level and the possibility of flooding, blockage of views, possibly inadequate parking and a precedent that would change the character of beachfront La Playa,” Sevrens said. "Design plans for the building itself were given only a hurried and cursory look at this early stage.”
Howard Haimsohn, a neighborhood spokesperson on the project, said it's now “on people's radar.” He noted the Save Kellogg Beach Facebook page solicited “more than 400 likes in one week.”
“About 80 percent of the public view will be wiped out,” said Haimsohn of the project arguing its size and scale is “out of character” with the surrounding neighborhood.
“The main concerns are public access, building on the beach and erosion,” Haimsohn said. “It will add to traffic congestion and safety concerns. Subterranean parking is a nightmare.”
Proponents of the condo conversion could not be reached by the Beacon for further comment.