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Car-free Balboa Park Plan Approved

May 12, 2022

Car-free Balboa Park Plan Approved

The San Diego City Council voted on Monday to approve a plan to move parking out of the center of Balboa Park. A goal sought by many for over 50 years. The project will eliminate parking in the Plaza de California and Plaza de Panama and fund the building of a 797-space parking garage near Alcazar Gardens and Spreckels Pavilion, and the 'Centennial Bridge' - a bypass that will route traffic off the Cabrillo Bridge and to the parking areas. $31 million of the $45.3 million is being paid for by the Plaza de Panama Committee - a group headed by Irwin Jacobs, cofounder of Qualcomm. The remaining $14 million will come from a city bond issued for the garage and mini-shuttle. To cover the bond, drivers who park in the garage will have to pay $5 for the first 5 hours and $5 for 5 additional hours. This is the first time paid parking will be used in Balboa Park. The rest of the spaces in the park (more than 80%) will remain free. Jacobs hopes to receive final approval by the end of this year so that construction can be completed in time for the 2015 centennial of the Panama-California Exposition.

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