Community members have complained for decades about San Ysidro's infrastructure. Old and inadequate streets and the absence of sidewalks and pedestrian pathways were mentioned in the community plan when it was revised in 1990. Since taking office in early December, Councilman Alvarez says most of the calls he’s received from San Ysidro residents have concerned infrastructure.
“This is supposed to be the international gateway— America’s front door —but look around at the sidewalks and the streets,” he says. “No one really feels like it’s a gateway. How could they?”
Between appointments with constituents, Alvarez walks west from the community service center along Camino de la Plaza, heading for Las Americas outlet mall, on the other side of I-5. As we cross the bridge over the freeway, we can see construction crews working on the new footbridge at the pedestrian port of entry. On the south side of Camino de la Plaza, the sidewalks between the border crossing and the outlet mall are new. Alvarez points to the north side of the street, where a section of sidewalk is missing.
As he looks at the dirt, Alvarez says he can understand why some residents accuse the City of favoring the more affluent neighborhoods. “There is some truth to that,” he says, “but it’s also true that many of those wealthier areas are newer than San Ysidro. This is an old neighborhood.”
The councilmember thinks that part of the problem is geography. Annexed to the city in 1957, San Ysidro and its neighboring South San Diego communities are nearly 20 miles south of downtown, separated from the rest of San Diego by Chula Vista and National City.
In the last couple of weeks, the buzz on some of the San Diego street-threads is on the subject of sidewalks. Some residents say that they have to split the expense with the city. Councilmember David Alvarez wants the City of San Diego to foot the bill 100%. Last month he proposed to “determine best how best to revise Council Policy 200-12, the Sidewalk Maintenance Policy.”Read More
The San Diego City Council Tuesday unanimously approved a 20-year lease that will pave the way for a museum and community center at a city-owned property adjacent to Chicano Park. “I want to thank you for saying ‘yes’ to the community this time because this community has heard ‘no’ a lot more than it has heard ‘yes’ over the years,” he told his colleagues. “Chicano Park is what it is today because of the community… The museum and cultural center will be successful because of the community.”Read More
If you’ve been ticketed recently for parking on the street during street sweeping hours, you may get a refund. That’s because the city hasn’t been doing it’s part when it comes to keeping San Diego’s streets clean. “The problem appears to be that the vehicles that are meant to go and sweep are non-functioning,” said City Councilman David Alvarez, who chairs the Environmental Committee.Read More