Dirt flies at Bikeway Village

Contractor at groundbreaking touts “greenest development on the bay”

Politicians break ground on Bikeway Village project, January 25, 2016
  • Politicians break ground on Bikeway Village project, January 25, 2016

The groundbreaking ceremony for the Bikeway Village, the latest improvement on the San Diego's Bayshore Bikeway, took place on January 25th in Imperial Beach.

Located at the north end of 13th Street, the Bikeway Village will feature a large outdoor deck, bicycle parking, a water-bottle refill station, and public restrooms, according to TSA Contracting. The project is also intended to be the “greenest development on the bay” not only by encouraging bike transit but also by using solar power cells on the roofing and using paint and finishes that have minimal pollutants.

The project will involve 30,000 square feet of land, renovations on the existing warehouses to cut large doorways that will have roll-up door access for retail stores, and the building of a “mock pier” in the nature area, according to architect John Sheehan of Studio E, the same company that designed Imperial Beach's Pier Plaza. The project also involves the San Diego Association of Governments and the LandLAB design firm.

Costing $4.5 million, the construction will employ up to 40 construction workers at a time, according to Terry Arnett of TSA Contracting, who added that there has been five years of pre-construction already.

"Imperial Beach was the missing link in the chain" of Coronado, National City, Chula Vista, and San Diego, said Imperial Beach City Council member Lorie Bragg. "It's going to be a world-class spot."

"I'm spending too much time in Imperial Beach," quipped county supervisor Greg Cox, who was also at the ceremony. Cox said the goal is to create connecting paths all around the bay."Maybe someday you'll be able to ride down a tube under the Coronado bridge," Cox said of a plan to suspend a tube-like structure under the Coronado Bridge to accommodate bikes and pedestrians.

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I would love a bike route over (or under) the Coronado bridge. Of course many residents of Coronado will oppose it, because there is a vocal minority there that loudly opposes anything that doesn't involve bringing back punitive bridge tolls.

I'm not a big fan of the County Supervisor but I have to give Cox credit for showing some vision and imagination with his idea for a tube crossing to Coronado. I think it would be terrific. Of course, it is much too advanced, too forward-thinking for sleepy ol' Sandy Eggo. All we know how to build are blacktop highways and facilities for men to play ball games in.

Don't forget libraries for the homeless. San Diego leaders have always thought small.

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