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    SeaWorld to end nightly fireworks; theme park set to debut new shows and rides
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Apr 18, 2017 | 37113 views | 3 3 comments | 17 17 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    SeaWorld plans to cease its nightly fireworks over Mission Bay during the summer. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    SeaWorld plans to cease its nightly fireworks over Mission Bay during the summer. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Orca Encounter will debut this summer with temporary seating around the orca underwater viewing area pool.
    Orca Encounter will debut this summer with temporary seating around the orca underwater viewing area pool.
    slideshow
    SeaWorld San Diego is transforming its decades-old business model. Recently scrapping its heretofore trademark Shamu shows, the marine mammal theme park is also silencing, for now, its nightly summer fireworks displays. “This summer we are debuting our new summer nighttime extravaganza called Electric Ocean,” said SeaWorld spokesman David Koontz. “At dusk, we will transform the park into an underwater world of colorful vibrancy immersing our guests in a glowing sea of bioluminescent-like lighting, music and pathway entertainment, and a dance club.” Koontz noted Electric Ocean “will be a nighttime version of our Cirque de la Mer show (a summer daytime show the last 12 years), which will be take place in our Cirque Stadium on Mission Bay. Complementing Cirque Electrique will be another new nighttime show featuring overhead laser lights and an interactive RFID (radio frequency identification) experience, acrobats and live musicians and an illuminated parade.” Koontz added SeaWorld's “Putting our fireworks on hiatus, other than on the summertime three-day holiday weekends, and for a handful of other special events. This new nighttime spectacular will have no impact on general aviation in that area, nor will it impact air traffic departing and arriving at Lindbergh Field.” The cessation of SeaWorld's summertime pyrotechnics was hailed by long-time opponents as a major step forward. Martha Sullivan, spokesperson for SeaWorld fireworks opponents, who launched a successful online petition drive garnering more than 11,000 signatures against summertime displays, labelled SeaWorld's announcement shelving them as a victory. “It's an evolution that we've been encouraging them to do,” Sullivan said. ”They're using new technologies and adjusting their business model to the current conditions of their customer base.” Sullivan added the marine park is “realizing they need to be good neighbors.” Asked why fireworks became an issue, Sullivan replied, “I think it was just people being really fed up with it.” SeaWorld fireworks detractors claim research shows “noise pollution from nightly fireworks causes harm to humans and other animals. … Effects of noise pollution to humans include (damage to the) physiological and psychological health of human beings: hypertension, annoyance, high stress levels, aggression, hearing loss, tinnitus, sleep disturbance, etc.” Meanwhile, SeaWorld is transitioning from theatrical orca shows to a more educational presentation reflecting natural behaviors of the whales. The final "One Ocean Shamu" show was conducted Jan. 8. The first of these live documentary-style presentations, called Orca Encounter, will debut at SeaWorld San Diego this summer with temporary seating around the orca underwater viewing area pool. Patrons will learn how killer whales behave in the wild, how they move, hunt and navigate, what they eat and even how they communicate. Orca Encounter will also look at broader themes such as research, rescue, conservation, habitats and distribution, husbandry and care, and social structures.  “This will inspire as well as educate guests about the majesty of these complex animals and reinforce the company’s commitment to provide educational experiences with the park’s resident orcas,” Koontz said.  Other game-changing developments at SeaWorld San Diego include development of the Electric Eel, 150-foot high ride roller coaster debuting summer 2018, and Submarine Quest, a submarine-inspired attraction.  Both attractions are coming to SeaWorld as part of the park's new Ocean Explorer area. Participants will experience digital technology and can interact with the ride to "save" ocean creatures.   Through Ocean Explorer, debuting later this year, guests, through an interactive mini-sub, can get up close to some of the ocean's most fascinating creatures, then take a spin on three new family friendly rides. With three new attractions, this is SeaWorld's biggest roll-out in 53 years.  For more information, visit seaworldparks.com.
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    Bay Park Resident
    |
    April 23, 2017
    @Justbetweenyouandme

    Do you really think 3 minutes of nighttime fireworks has a bigger noise impact than jets flying overhead every 15 minutes all day or motorboats and jetskis on bay? I agree that one cannot make an argument for the utility of fireworks, but we happen to enjoy seeing them every night and I would challenge anyone to show me data that the biggest environmental threat to the area is a 3 minute fireworks show rather than the parade of cars on 5, motorized transport on the bay, people's slovenly habits in the park, jets flying overhead OR the periodic dumps of human waste into the bay. Not to mention the desire for increased "densification" along the Morena corridor.

    How people assess risk continues to be an absolute mystery to me.
    Fireworks Loving Guy
    |
    April 18, 2017
    You've gotta be kidding me. The killjoy levels of the vocal minority are out of control. What's next? No more ice cream shops? GET A F&*^% LIFE PEOPLE.
    Justbetweenyouandme
    |
    April 21, 2017
    There are many ways to celebrate without explosive noise.

    Japan’s Muroya wins Red Bull Air Race over San Diego Bay
    Apr 17, 2017 | 7356 views | 0 0 comments | 24 24 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Kirby Chambliss (USA) flies through the course on Sunday. He finished fourth. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Kirby Chambliss (USA) flies through the course on Sunday. He finished fourth. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Reigning world champion Matthias Dolderer finished third after clipping a pylon on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Reigning world champion Matthias Dolderer finished third after clipping a pylon on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Peter Podlunšek from Slovenian stunned the field in capturing second place in his first-ever Final 4. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Peter Podlunšek from Slovenian stunned the field in capturing second place in his first-ever Final 4. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA) flies past the USS Midway on San Diego Bay on Sunday. He finished seventh. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA) flies past the USS Midway on San Diego Bay on Sunday. He finished seventh. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Yoshihide (Yoshi) Muroya of Japan on the course during his first run on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Yoshihide (Yoshi) Muroya of Japan on the course during his first run on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Kirby Chambliss (USA) zips through the course with San Diego as a backdrop on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Kirby Chambliss (USA) zips through the course with San Diego as a backdrop on Sunday. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    One upset followed another at the second stop of the 2017 Red Bull Air Race World Championship in San Diego on Sunday. Yoshihide (Yoshi) Muroya of Japan was the only pilot with the consistency to reach the top of the podium, dazzling a crowd of more than 40,000 fans across the race weekend, with a time of 58.529. Peter Podlunšek from Slovenian stunned the field in capturing second place in his first-ever Final 4, two seconds behind Muroya at 1:00.454. Reigning world champion Matthias Dolderer was third after a pylon hit, and American Kirby Chambliss finished fourth. Earning 15 World Championship points with the victory, Muroya jumped up 10 places in the overall standings, to third behind Martin Šonka of the Czech Republic (21 points) and Dolderer (16). The result was especially meaningful because the next stop of the season is in Muroya’s home skies of Chiba, Japan – where he earned his first Red Bull Air Race win in 2016. “I’m quite happy. We had a very hard time at the season opener in Abu Dhabi, and we’ve been working really hard for months,” said Muroya, who had an over-G penalty at the 2017 kickoff. “My crew and my family have been helping a lot to help us get more stable and consistent, and I thank them. “The next race in Japan is going to be a big one, and it’s an important step forward to win here as I head to my home country. It’s a huge crowd and pressure for me, but I will have fun there.”  In the day’s earlier action, 2016 Challenger Cup winner Florian Bergér of Germany earned his first Challenger Class win of the season. For more information on tickets and all the latest, visit www.redbullairrace.com. Results Master Class San Diego: 1. Yoshihide Muroya (JPN), 2. Peter Podlunšek (SLO), 3. Matthias Dolderer (GER), 4. Kirby Chambliss (USA), 5. Martin Šonka (CZE), 6. Petr Kopfstein (CZE), 7. Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA), 8. Michael Goulian (USA), 9. Matt Hall (AUS), 10. Pete McLeod (CAN), 11. Juan Velarde (ESP), 12. François Le Vot (FRA), 13. Mikaël Brageot (FRA), 14. Cristian Bolton (CHI). World Championship standings after two races: 1. Martin Šonka (CZE) 21 points, 2. Matthias Dolderer (GER) 16 pts, 3. Yoshihide Muroya (JPN) 15 pts, 4. Juan Velarde (ESP) 12 pts, 5. Peter Podlunšek (SLO) 12 pts, 6. Pete McLeod (CAN) 10 pts, 7. Nicolas Ivanoff (FRA) 10 pts, 8. Michael Goulian (USA) 8 pts, 9. Kirby Chambliss (USA) 7 pts, 10. Petr Kopfstein (CZE) 5 pts, 11. Cristian Bolton (CHI) 4 pts, 12. François Le Vot (FRA) 3 pts, 13. Matt Hall (AUS) 3 pts, 14. Mikaël Brageot (FRA) 2 pts.
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    Community briefs for Point Loma and Ocean Beach
    Apr 13, 2017 | 20046 views | 0 0 comments | 0 0 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    The Californian sails through San Diego Bay with downtown as a backdrop. The Californian is a replica of the 1847 Revenue Cutter C.W. Lawrence, which patrolled the coast of California enforcing federal law during the gold rush. The yacht was built from the ground up in 1984 at Spanish Landing in San Diego Bay. She was launched with great fanfare for the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles. In July 2003, the governor signed a bill into law designating the Californian as the official tall ship of the State of California. She is the only ship to carry this prestigious title. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    The Californian sails through San Diego Bay with downtown as a backdrop. The Californian is a replica of the 1847 Revenue Cutter C.W. Lawrence, which patrolled the coast of California enforcing federal law during the gold rush. The yacht was built from the ground up in 1984 at Spanish Landing in San Diego Bay. She was launched with great fanfare for the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles. In July 2003, the governor signed a bill into law designating the Californian as the official tall ship of the State of California. She is the only ship to carry this prestigious title. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Easter Sunrise Service Easter is April 16 this year and the gates to Cabrillo National Monument will open at 6 a.m. with the non-denominational service beginning at 6:30 a.m. There is seating for approximately 700 attendees and the public is encouraged to arrive early. The Kiwanis Club of Point Loma will again present an ecumenical Easter Sunrise Service at the Cabrillo National Monument. The services will be held in the lower parking lot, giving those who attend a great early morning panoramic view of San Diego Harbor and the city behind it. The speakers this year are Capt. Howard Warner, commanding officer, Naval Base Point Loma, Lonnie Folsom, Kiwanis Division 21, and Matt Lemas, president Point Loma Kiwanis Club. Free entry at Cabrillo National Monument National Park Week is an annual week for celebration and recognition of national parks. Visitors to Cabrillo National Monument will be granted free admission April 15, 16, 22 and 23. - Junior Ranger Day will take place on Saturday, April 15. Ask for a free Junior Ranger program at the visitor center. New Junior Rangers will be awarded a National Park Week badge. - Open Tower Day will take place on Wednesday, April 19. Visitors will be able to climb the 31 stairs to the top of the Old Point Loma Lighthouse. Groups of 10 at a time will be guided to the top. No bags will be permitted. This event is weather permitting. For more information, visit www.nps.gov/cabr. Republican Women monthly luncheon Point Loma Republican Women Federated monthly luncheon meeting will be 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 19 at Point Loma Cafe, 4865 Harbor Drive. Program: Eric Golub – a popular Republican commentator and comedian. A no host lunch follows. Guests welcome. Call Marilyn at 619-222-9532 for information. Veterans plaza fundraiser Join the Ocean Beach Community Development Corporation to honor veterans at Wonderland Ocean Pub on Abbott Street in Ocean Beach 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 19. This event is the kickoff for a capital campaign to raise $1 million to build a new regional veterans plaza in Ocean Beach in 2018. The event is sponsored by the OBCDC with the support of the Ocean Beach Community groups. All donations are tax-deductible and pledge-sheets will be available. There is a minimum $50 per person donation at the door. Detailed information about the new veterans plaza will be presented. For advance information, visit obcdc.org. Meeting about Saratoga Park options The Ocean Beach Community Development Corporation will hold its second neighborhood meeting regarding the children's park/lifeguard fitness areas at Saratoga Park. This is an opportunity to meet the designers and have questions answered. The forum is at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 18 at the Ocean Beach Recreation Center. Seashell hunt Crystal Pier Bait and Tackle will be having a seashell hunt on Easter Sunday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Children can come to Crystal Pier in Pacific Beach, find a seashell (one per child) and bring it to the shop for a treat and a chance to win a grand prize. OB Green Center annual celebration Ocean Beach Green Center is celebrating Earth Day and 28 years of environmental, peace and social justice activism at its annual anniversary celebration fundraiser 2 to 7 p.m. Saturday, April 22 at 4843 B, Voltaire St. There will be live music and presentations on solutions to the homeless situation, climate change, and social justice issues. For information, visit oceanbeachgreencenter.org. Lenten food drive Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church is holding its annual Lenten food drive through April 16. Consider donating non-perishable food or personal hygiene items that supports the Mission Beyond Partners, Presbyterian Urban Ministries, Loaves and Fishes Food Ministry, OB Community Dinners and Military Outreach Ministries. Any questions, contact Kathy Zorn and Eddie Dees at 619-224-2177. You can drop off items at: Point Loma Community Presbyterian Church, 2128 Chatsworth Blvd. 619-223-1633; Stump's Family Marketplace, 3770 Voltaire St. 619-226-9575; Jensen's Foods, 955 Catalina Blvd. 619-550-2097; US Bank, 2150 Chatsworth Blvd. 619-226-5557. Talmadge Art Show The Talmadge Art Show artists have created works of contemporary craft and clothing just for this show 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 7 at Liberty Station Conference Center, 2600 Laning Road. For more, visit talmadgeartshow.com. OB photo contest The Ocean Beach Town Council has started a "Share Your OB" photo contest. To enter just tag your best photos of OB with #shareyourOB and post on Instagram or Facebook. Winner receives bragging rights and is entered in a monthly drawing for some cool swag. Each Saturday, a new winner will be announced. So get out there and #shareyourOB. Miracle Babies 5K The ninth annual Miracle Babies 5K will take place from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, May 7 at NTC Park at Liberty Station (2455 Cushing Road), with registration beginning at 7 a.m. The event includes a timed 5K run at 8 a.m. followed by a family friendly 5K walk at 9 a.m. Attendees are invited to show their spirit by dressing up as their favorite hero. Participants will receive a collectable race medal and are encourage and invited to attend in the postrace celebration including a Kid Zone, Family Resource Fair, merchandise vendors, food trucks and exotic cars. Registration fee for walkers is $25 for adults and free for children under 12. Runners’ fee is $30 for adults and $10 for children under 12. Register at www.miraclebabies5k.com. Summer concerts series seeks sponsors As the Point Loma Summer Concerts board gears up for another season of free, summer concerts at Point Loma Park, they are seeking new community sponsors. After losing a major sponsor this year, the board had an idea: Since the event is truly a neighborhood event, why not ask neighbors to sponsor the concerts? The neighborhood with the most donations will get reserved seating at their concert of choice – complete with signage. Those interested in donating on behalf of their neighborhood can go to the Summer Concerts website at www.plconcerts.org, click on the donate button at the top of the page, enter a donation amount, and – this is critical – click “Write a note,” then enter their NextDoor neighborhood name. The Summer Concerts are on Fridays, July 14 through Aug. 11 at 6:30 p.m. This year’s lineup (in concert order): The Mighty Untouchables, Detroit Underground, PettyBreakers, Cash’d Out, and Battle of the Bands: Beatles vs. Stones. For more information, go to www.plconcerts.org. Battle of San Diego Bay House of Spain, Casa De España will host the Battle of San Diego Bay 214th anniversary celebration through the courtesy of the U.S. Naval Base Point Loma. This event commemorates the only Pacific Coast, ship-to-shore battle between an American ship, the Lelia Byrd, and Spain’s Fort Guijarros located on Naval Base Point Loma from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.Saturday, April 22 at Naval Base Point Loma, at the end of Rosecrans Street. The ceremony begins at noon with a flag raising ceremony, accompanied by Spain and U.S. national anthems. Following the ceremony there will be a Spanish dance performance by Doña Juanita Franco, and her Classical Dance Academy Ole Flamenco. The fiesta will include a variety of historical, cultural and maritime displays; historical costumes; children’s craft activities, bounce house, and food and beverage services including paella (by Paella Valenciana Catering), tapas, desserts, beer, wine and sangria. VanDover named sales manager Zephyr’s The Park, Bankers Hill, has added luxury high-rise real estate specialist, Micah VanDover, as its community sales manager. With more than 16 years of experience selling luxury condominiums and private residences in high-profile buildings and hotels, VanDover brings a wealth of knowledge to his new role. “I’ve always worked with luxury buyers, and while they have unique preferences, the one commonality they all share is a love of five-star service,” he says. “I’ll provide that level of service to buyers and the brokers and agents who represent them.” VanDover is married with two children and one on the way. In his free time, he enjoys surfing, building sand castles with his kids and doing mission work.
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    Rose of Sharon wins America’s Schooner Cup
    Apr 07, 2017 | 6029 views | 0 0 comments | 35 35 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    Rose of Sharon, skippered by Byron Chamberlain, passes Dauntless on the way to winning the 29th America's Schooner Cup. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Rose of Sharon, skippered by Byron Chamberlain, passes Dauntless on the way to winning the 29th America's Schooner Cup. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    The Californian dwarfs the other schooners in San Diego Bay. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    The Californian dwarfs the other schooners in San Diego Bay. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    The San Salvador replica on the horizon. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    The San Salvador replica on the horizon. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    Schooners race in San Diego Bay with downtown San Diego as a backdrop. / Photo by Thomas Melville
    Schooners race in San Diego Bay with downtown San Diego as a backdrop. / Photo by Thomas Melville
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    In 1930, the schooners Rose of Sharon, Dauntless and Curlew were among 42 yachts that finished the 660-mile Bermuda Race from New London to Bermuda and lay at anchor at the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Eighty seven years later, these same three schooners crossed the finish line along with 10 others in the 29th running of America’s Schooner Cup in San Diego Bay. With a fresh breeze and bright sunshine, Rose of Sharon captured the Cup, nosing out second place finisher Curlew, by a mere 48 seconds on corrected time. Each of these yachts have not only survived, but thrived. It is a testament to the loving care and dedication of their owners. Among our three oldest surviving schooners, owners Byron Chamberlain, Bob Harrison and Paul Plotts have continuously campaigned Rose of Sharon, Curlew, and Dauntless, respectively, and coincidentally, for a combined total of 87 years. Plotts founded the Schooner Cup with the Kona Kai International Yacht Club and has raced in all but four since. They’ve participated in races in such destinations as San Francisco, New York, Puerto Vallarta and Hawaii. “It’s not who wins, it’s the fun of seeing old friends and the warm welcome we always receive from the members of Silver Gate Yacht Club, our hosts. They make it such a joy to race every year.” Plotts said. Jerry Newton completed a five-month refit of Maid of Kent with two days to spare – just in time to enter his 25th Schooner Cup. But dedication to their beautiful boats is not what keeps them coming back. Silver Gate Yacht Club thanked the Maritime Museum of San Diego whose support enabled Californian to participate in the race, and the San Salvador to carry guests. Also, kudos to America and Bill of Rights for their participation and guest accommodations. “We’re indebted to the many local businesses and generous individuals whose donations benefit the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society,” said representitvies from Silver Gate Yacht Club.
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    South Mission Beach may finally get new lifeguard station
    by DAVE SCHWAB
    Apr 05, 2017 | 9350 views | 0 0 comments | 28 28 recommendations | email to a friend | print
    As currently proposed, a three-story, 3,800-square-foot tower with a first-aid station, vehicle bay, administrative offices and two observation decks would replace the 900-square-foot wooden structure (above) built in the 1970s.
    As currently proposed, a three-story, 3,800-square-foot tower with a first-aid station, vehicle bay, administrative offices and two observation decks would replace the 900-square-foot wooden structure (above) built in the 1970s.
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    A revised court ruling has cleared the way for construction of a long-delayed new lifeguard tower for South Mission Beach, much to the chagrin of opponents whose lawsuit contended the project was outdated and needed to start over. In a complete reversal of the Lower Superior Court, the Fourth Appellate District Court of Appeal recently ruled that the lifeguard tower’s site development permit was valid and had not expired, as project opponents had claimed. The appellate court also ruled that the plaintiff’s suit was filed too late. The city claims the new, three-story tower replacing a small, 40-year-old wooden structure will provide better views of the water and accommodate additional lifeguards and equipment. “This is an important victory because it means better lifeguard coverage on one of our busiest beaches and safer swimming conditions for our residents and visitors,” City Attorney Mara Elliott said. “Just as important, it reaffirms earlier rulings that unequivocally support the city’s right to move forward with public projects as financing and approvals allow.” Project opponents were less sanguine about the judicial turnabout. “I think the appellate judge was just totally misled by the fabricated story the city presented, that this (opposition) was just a couple of disgruntled homeowners complaining about their views,” said Ken Giavara, spokesman for tower opponents, who say that's exactly the way the case went down. Giavara said the appellate court missed the real point of the case, upheld by the lower court, which was that the lifeguard tower’s site development permit was invalid because it had expired. “The judge's decision should have been based on whether the permit was void – or good,” Giavara said. “The appellate judge never even addressed that issue. This wasn't about the views. This was about an illegal procedure and permitting. We (citizens) were not given our legal right to have an input.” Superior Court Judge Katherine Bacal previously sided with Giavara and a neighborhood group in Mission Beach known as Citizens For Beach Rights (CFBR). That group had challenged a new, bigger lifeguard tower on South Mission Beach first proposed in 2002. Bacal's decision in December 2015 kept the lifeguard tower from being constructed in 2016. Following a Nov. 18, 2015 bench trial, Bacal sided with CFBR agreeing that a site development permit for the South Mission Beach Lifeguard Station “is void and, thus, no construction can occur under its SDP.” CFBR has contended the new proposed lifeguard tower is the wrong size, in the wrong place because of potential flooding, and has been propelled through the city's project-approval process without proper permitting. As currently proposed, a three-story, 3,800-square-foot tower with a first-aid station, vehicle bay, administrative offices and two observation decks would replace a 900-square-foot wooden structure built in the 1970s. When originally proposed in 2002, the lifeguard tower project was budgeted to cost $1.1 million. That price tag has mushroomed in 15 years to about $5 million due to delays and issues such as erosion control. Giavara noted the Mission Beach lifeguard tower case has changed city policy. “City permits used to be valid for a 36-month period,” he said. “Now they're valid for a 10-year period.” The only vote the lifeguard tower was ever put to was in 2005 when the project was denied by the Mission Beach Town Council, said Giavara, who claims the city was also remiss in not properly noticing homeowners near the project about developments with it, as required by law. “I think the city should be held to the same standards private citizens are held to,” said Giavara predicting, with added legal costs, that the cost of the project “will be $9 million by the time we're done with this.” Giavara said the opponents' only recourse now would be to appeal the case to the state Supreme Court. “We were never against the lifeguards,” Giavara said. “Our group wants the lifeguards to get the best structure for that beach.”
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