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Executive Summary

Your Vision. Our Future. Proudly facilitating Our Greater San Diego Vision on behalf of the region’s residents.

Our Greater San Diego Vision July 2012 If there is a single word that describes the San Diego region, it is “paradise.” And this paradise is our home. We love this place and want to protect it for future generations. Welcome to Your Vision, presented here as Our Greater San Diego Vision, which is both a unique process and a priceless outcome. The process was designed to be big - to span the entire region, to engage more people than had ever been engaged, and to weave together all the issues that impact our quality of life. The product is a framework for further conversations to inform future planning. It is not a plan. Our Greater San Diego Vision was created out of a desire to capture the community’s vision for the future of the region - through unprecedented engagement that involved more than 30,000 people. San Diegans’ input from the very beginning ensured that this would be the people’s vision and that it would speak to what all of us care about most. This vision is about preserving the best of the past and protecting all that’s good today, while creating an even better tomorrow for our children and grandchildren. A massive effort spanning three years began with an in-depth study to determine our collective hopes and dreams, our worries and fears - our values. Those values pointed to four areas that are critical for a bright future - jobs and wages, community and cultural amenities, housing/transportation and cost of living, and life-long learning - Work, Enjoy, Live and Learn. The four areas provided a framework for subject-matter experts to flesh out issues, and then for the public to choose among reasonable alternatives. Thirty thousand people voiced their choices and we heard them. We learned that our collective vision for the future is a San Diego region where: •

A prosperous economy provides a broad range of job opportunities.

Housing options match what people want and can afford.

A quality learning environment effectively prepares people for life.

Neighborhoods are safe, vibrant and convenient centers of community life, arts and culture.

Nature is accessible, connected, and protected for people to enjoy.

Convenient transportation choices are available for people to go where they want.

Trusted regional leadership, collaboration and participation create a future that fulfills people’s hopes and dreams.

Our Greater San Diego Vision is a blueprint, a map, and so much more. It weaves together aspiration seeing what tomorrow could and should be - and inspiration - the excitement and energy to make that tomorrow real. This is just the start. From here, together, we must act. The San Diego Foundation Malin Burnham Center for Civic Engagement will steward the Vision and help move the region forward by convening stakeholders, informing decisions, engaging people, and impacting the evolution of this paradise we call our home. Start here, and look to the future with hope and with commitment. Start with this shared vision Our Greater San Diego Vision - a process and a product, and the first step in a journey.

Bill Geppert Chair, Our Greater San Diego Vision

Jennifer Adams-Brooks Chair, The San Diego Foundation Board of Governors

Bob Kelly President and CEO, The San Diego Foundation

Your Vision. Our Future. The region’s many local and tribal governments, special districts, and local and state agencies have different geographic and issues-based scopes. None span the entirety of the region’s geography and its intertwined issues. Our Greater San Diego Vision is intended to support and inform the work of these and other organizations, and to provide a voice for our residents. Our Greater San Diego Vision is a shared vision of the future for the region in its entirety.

Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary


why a VISION?

As San Diegans, we rate satisfaction with our overall quality of life uncommonly high relative

San Diego’s History

to other regions in the nation. But we worry

San Diego is the product of multi-culturalism

about the future and the potential downsides of

partly due to its border with Mexico. Today,

population growth. Yet that growth, managed

almost one-third of San Diegans are Hispanic or

well, could provide many opportunities. How do

Latino, with substantial representation from Asian,

we do it right? We do it by having a long-term,

African-American, and other ethnic groups.

well-informed vision that helps us plan for the best possible future.

The region has benefited from a strong, vibrant and diverse economic base. Since World War II, the military has been a significant source of

The San Diego Region

economic development. San Diego’s weather

The region includes all of San Diego County,

destination. And more recently, investments

a vast area of more than 4,500 square miles

in universities and research institutions have

and home to more than 3,000,000 people

created an economic engine in research

concentrated in the western, coastal areas. We

and technology.

enjoy a mild, Mediterranean-like climate and extraordinary natural beauty including beaches and bays, a naturally protected port, rivers, canyons, mountains, and deserts. Arguably, the one word that describes the region is “paradise.”

and natural assets make it a major tourist

San Diego is what it is today thanks to past visionaries. From the 1908 Nolan Plan to Envision Carlsbad, and from Chula Vista’s nation-leading recycling programs to Revitalize Alpine, the region has a history of forward thinking. Our Greater San Diego Vision builds on and continues that heritage.


Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary

Panama–California Exposition in Balboa Park in 1915.

Today, Balboa Park is one of the world’s largest urban parks.

The Future of Our Region Change. Our world and our region are changing

Economy. Housing affordability may be the

from many perspectives. Proactive adaptation

single greatest challenge the region faces. Many

will be necessary to preserve what we love about

San Diegans worry that they or their children will

this place.

not be able to stay here.

Growth. San Diego’s population is projected

Whether regional issues are environmental,

to grow by another 1.3 million people by

economic or infrastructure-related, they cut

2050 – mostly (63%) our own children and

across geographic boundaries, making region-

grandchildren. Growth is inevitable as long as

wide thinking and cooperation imperative.

San Diego is a great place to live.

The Importance of a Long-Range Plan for Our Region

Extremely important

38% Very important


41% Somewhat important

According to the values research for Our Greater


San Diego Vision conducted in mid-2010, almost 80% of San Diegans feel that a vision or long-range plan for the region is extremely or very important, but only 37% believe that the region was doing a good

Not very important

2% Not at all important

or excellent job in planning for the future when this


visioning effort began.

Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary


the PATH

to the VISION

Values “Values” embody our most important priorities, desires and issues. At the start of Our Greater San Diego Vision, an in-depth values study was conducted region-wide. Four core values emerged. San Diegans want: • Quality jobs and a reasonable cost of living.

• Quality education and learning opportunities.

• Family-friendly neighborhoods and communities. • Outdoor opportunities for enjoyment with family and friends.

Factors That Have the Most Significant Impact on Quality of Life High cost of living/expensive to live here


Lack of job opportunities and low wages


Too much traffic and congestion/ not enough transportation options Lack of affordable housing


Lack of leadership on important regional issues


Everything so close and convenient


Family friendly: great place to raise a family


Low crime and safe neighborhoods


Outdoor recreation opportunities/ enjoying the outdoors High-quality schools (K-12)

Negative Impacts


Postitive Impacts

4% 4%

Percentages represent the proportion of people who consider that factor to have the most significant impact on their personal quality of life. This is only a partial listing.

WELL From the values research, four primary focus areas were identified that cut across multiple values and represented discrete topics for concentrated study. These are areas where we: WORK, ENJOY, LIVE and LEARN (WELL). Jobs and the Economy

Housing, Environment, Mobility and Cost of Living

Cultural and Community Amenities

Education and Learning

Task forces delved into the four focus areas and region-wide workshops garnered public input, all of which drove the structure and content of the online choosing tool.


Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary

One of six public workshops involving regional planning.

Show Your Love From November 2011 to February 2012, San Diegans were asked to “Show Your Love” by choosing their preferences in four online modules consistent with the four WELL focus

MORE THAN 30,000 PARTICIPANTS! 27,991 completed at least one online choosing module 2,100 completed the baseline and scientific survey 71,147 individual modules were completed 600+ public workshops

areas. This resulted in the greatest public participation in a regional visioning effort

Demographic Data

anywhere in the country, with more than 30,000 respondents completing more than 71,000

Data from online choosing (left) and scientific survey (right).

modules. Significant outreach ensured broad-

17 and under:

based participation in the campaign by people


33% | 39%


33% | 34%


21% | 27%

representing a broad range of age groups and backgrounds throughout the region.

Scientific Survey In addition to the online choosing, a scientific

Mean age:

12% | –

39 | 43

White/ Caucasian:

49% | 65%*

Hispanic/ Latino:

22% | 32%

African-American: 9% | 4%

survey was conducted to validate the results


9% | 11%

of the Show Your Love campaign. This survey,

Native Hawaiian/ Pacific Islander:

1% | 1%

statistically adjusted based on the region’s demographics, showed that the choosing results

American Indian or Alaskan Native:

1% | 1%

represented the entire population. The survey


3% | 9%

also showed that roughly one-third of


San Diegans were aware of the campaign!

– | 9%

Decline to answer: 6% | – * Does not add to 100% due to multiple categories which could be chosen.

Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary




We began the process for Our Greater San Diego Vision by uncovering deeply personal values held by our region-wide community. These led to an approach centered around the four focus areas, to which both experts and residents from around the region contributed their best thinking. These foundational elements informed development of an online choosing tool that facilitated an unprecedented level of public engagement. What followed was a vision that began to coalesce around the Show Your Love results. Summarized here are those results, presented as top priorities for the four focus areas, as well as some specific growth strategies that emerged from the task forces and workshops. These priorities provide the building blocks for our common vision for the future of the region.

Top Priorities for How We WORK: • Support our local economy and its relationship to the region’s industries. • Promote the economic engines of innovation, the military and tourism. • Harness the power of innovation.

Top Priorities for How We ENJOY: • Protect and connect natural lands. • Provide education in physical activity, arts, civics, and culture. • Ensure access to major community amenities.


Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary

Top Priorities for How We LIVE: • Make housing more affordable and ensure a range of choices that matches what people want. • Conserve water. • Increase accessible transportation options. • Reduce daily travel time. • Locate destinations close to where people live. • Protect key lands.

Top Priorities for How We LEARN: • Enable individuals to participate effectively in a dynamic, global economy. • Prepare individuals to be well-informed and actively engaged in civic and political matters. • Maximize individual potential and well-being. • Personalize education and learning. • Prepare children to learn in their early childhood.

Specific Growth Strategies Several “big idea” growth strategies were presented and participants were asked to indicate their agreement or disagreement. More than two-thirds supported high-speed, inter-city rail transportation connecting San Diego to other places in California; nearly two-thirds supported a new South Bay university; nearly two-thirds also supported redevelopment of the Qualcomm Stadium area; and an overwhelming majority (close to three-quarters) supported greater regional collaboration. Fewer participants supported an additional international airport and a new sports/entertainment complex. Support for new development in areas like Rancho Guejito was marginal and San Diegans opposed allowing some building along the coast to be taller than 30 feet.

Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary


the VISION Our Collective Vision is a Region Where… • A prosperous economy provides a broad range of good job opportunities. • Housing options match what people want and can afford. • A quality learning environment effectively prepares people for life. • Neighborhoods are safe, vibrant and convenient centers of community life, arts and culture. • Nature is accessible, connected and protected for people to enjoy. • Convenient transportation choices are available for people to go where they want. • Trusted regional leadership, collaboration and participation create a future that fulfills people’s hopes and dreams. Pursuing all of these seven core goals in order to fulfill our aspirations for the four focus areas will ultimately make Our Greater San Diego Vision a reality.


Our Greater San Diego Vision - Executive Summary

Vision Forward We now have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to capitalize on the momentum and energy of Our Greater San Diego Vision. San Diegans care deeply about this place we call home and want to be engaged in protecting and providing for its future.



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issues. It will generate information and ideas, spur vigorous conversations about the future, help launch ambitious initiatives, and contribute to the development and implementation of regional and sub-regional plans. The Center will play a catalytic role in civic education, leadership training, and policy analysis to protect and enhance the quality of life in our region. The Center’s activities will include convenings, cutting-edge research, major forums, strategic and proactive grantmaking, informing and advancing regional public policy, and region-wide communications.

Cert no. XXX-XXX-000

This report has been printed using soy-based inks on “green” paper which has been certificated by Smart Wood to the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standards. The FSC, along with the Rainforest Alliance, promotes environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial, and economically viable management of the world’s forests.


The San Diego Foundation Board of Governors Jennifer Adams-Brooks, Chair Robert Dynes, PhD, Vice Chair, Center for Civic Engagement Garry Ridge, Vice Chair, Charitable Giving and External Relations Steven R. Smith, Vice Chair, Secretary John D. Wylie, Vice Chair, Finance

Gerald (Jerry) E. Hoffmeister, Immediate Past Chair

Richard A. Collato

Paul Meyer

Roger C. Cornell, MD

Hollyce J. Phillips

Yamila M. Ayad

Sandra Daley, MD

Derek J. Quackenbush

Darcy C. Bingham

Jim Farley

Barbara A. Sawrey, PhD

James Cahill

Bill Geppert

Nancy A. Spector

John Cambon, PhD

Benjamin Haddad

Horacio Valeiras

Constance M. Carroll, PhD

Kevin Harris

Carisa Wisniewski

Ted Chan, MD

Jennifer LeSar

James Ziegler

Kay Chandler

Connie Matsui

Regional Vision Group Bill Geppert, Chair

Jennifer Adams-Brooks

Kevin Harris

Kris Michell

Bob Kelly, President & CEO

Mary Ball

Gerald (Jerry) E. Hoffmeister

Ed Quinn

Robert Dynes, PhD

Peter James MacCracken, APR

Steven R. Smith

Connie Matsui

Charles “Muggs” Stoll

Paul Albert

Jackie Lackenbacher

Robert Clark

Arzo Nasiri

Wyn Furman

Marisa Aurora Quiroz

Amanda Greechan

Robyn Sharp

Emily Welborn Guevara

Felicia Shaw

The San Diego Foundation Vision Staff Daniel Beintema Vice President, Operations & Community Partnerships

Heather Back Associate Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Anna-Marie Rooney Vice President, Marketing & Communications

Lori Holt Pfeiler Associate Vice President, Our Greater San Diego Vision Emily Young, PhD Senior Director, Environment

Nicola Hedge

Community Partners Malin Burnham

Ron Fowler

Bill Geppert

Irwin Jacobs

Connie Matsui

Buzz Woolley

Corporate Partners


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Media Partners

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Consultant Team Team Lead


2508 Historic Decatur Road, Suite 200, San Diego, CA 92106 Phone: (619) 235-2300 • Email: Join us: ©2012 The San Diego Foundation. All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced without the express written permission of The San Diego Foundation.

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Our Greater San Diego Vision Executive Summary  

San Diego County is a vast area of more than4,500 square miles, larger than the states of RhodeIsland and Delaware combined. The region isho...

Our Greater San Diego Vision Executive Summary  

San Diego County is a vast area of more than4,500 square miles, larger than the states of RhodeIsland and Delaware combined. The region isho...