North Embarcadero Visionary Plan
A couple walks past the closed Grape Street Piers along San Diego's North Embarcadero. The piers, along with several other locations along the one-mile stretch of land, were never developed according to the Port of San Diego's visionary plan.

by Brad Racino | inewsource

Massive projects are moving ahead along San Diego’s waterfront from Seaport Village through Lane Field and all the way to Harbor Island. Yet these changes are not part of a cohesive plan for the sort of world-class waterfront that distinguishes other cities. Instead, they’re piecemeal projects that many civic leaders and activists say illustrate San Diego’s overall approach toward development.

With so much at stake along the waterfront, inewsource zeroed in on one particular stretch of land to find out how it developed and what lessons might be learned. That one-mile stretch is called the North Embarcadero — from the USS Midway to the airport.

It once was part of a “visionary” plan built on open space that would showcase San Diego’s front porch to the world. Yet despite the plan becoming law and receiving widespread public support, little by little it was chipped apart through sheer force of will, developer interests and a bet on a tanking industry.

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