Save Quartyard and Secure a Permanent Home for the Urban Park
This petition had 3,029 supporters
San Diego is at risk of losing one of its most successful and dynamic community parks.
Located on the corner of Park Boulevard and Market Street, the Quartyard is an urban park constructed from repurposed shipping containers in the heart of East Village. What originally began as a thesis project from a team of graduate students at NewSchool of Architecture and Design, focusing on sustainable design in blighted areas, has become a major neighborhood gathering space that now serves an average of 9,000 residents and visitors each month.
Through a unique public-private partnership with the City of San Diego in 2014, the creators of Quartyard took a vacant publicly-owned lot and transformed it into a thriving, 25,000 square foot outdoor community space. Open seven days a week, it’s now home to a coffee shop, restaurant, craft beer garden, music venue, food trucks, and downtown’s only dog park. More than 160 events have been held at Quartyard in the past eighteen months, from night markets, to concerts, and community festivals. Most events are free and open to the public.
Unfortunately, the City’s redevelopment agency (Civic San Diego) has entered into negotiations to sell the publicly owned lot Quartyard sits on to Holland Partners, a developer seeking to build a 34 story mixed use residential development. Holland Partner’s project, known as Park & Market, would require the removal of Quartyard. The proposed project still requires additional review and approval from various city planning agencies, and ultimately the San Diego City Council. This lengthy review process begins Tuesday, July 12th, at the Downtown Community Planning Council Pre-Design Subcommittee hearing.
We, as community supporters of the Quartyard, believe this is our time to be heard. It’s time to save Quartyard, and secure a permanent home for it.
Quartyard was designed, financed, and built by the community for the community. Quartyard staff held workshops and engaged downtown residents for public input. Hundreds of community residents raised $60,000 to pay for Quartyard’s initial expenses and city fees through a Kickstarter campaign, reaching their goal in only 30 days.
Quartyard’s utilization of sustainable and innovative design offers locals and visitors alike a unique outdoors experience unlike any currently available. It provides important community functions that are unlikely to be replaced if nothing changes.
Losing Quartyard will negatively impact not only downtown residents and visitors, but also local businesses. Through programming and product sales, Quartyard has supported more than 40 local craft breweries, 35 food trucks, and more than 70 additional local businesses. Between tenants and food trucks, Quartyard generates more than $3 million in sales each year, creating sales tax revenue for the City of San Diego.
Quartyard was designed and intended as a temporary park, located on a lot zoned for high density residential use. But it’s grown beyond a temporary park – it’s now a thriving popular community space, and has earned the right to a permanent home in downtown San Diego.
We, the supporters of Quartyard, ask the following:
· We ask the San Diego City Council, Civic San Diego, the San Diego Planning Commission and the Downtown Community Planning Council to support the community’s broader effort to save Quartyard for future generations;
· We ask that the San Diego City Council and Civic San Diego evaluate whether, given the change in conditions, it is in the community's interest to remove Quartyard from downtown San Diego;
· We ask for Holland Partners to work with the Quartyard staff and evaluate whether Quartyard can be integrated into its proposed residential project;
· We ask for Civic San Diego to work with the Quartyard staff and evaluate whether Quartyard can be relocated at any current downtown park or proposed park in the planning process (East Village Green, et al);
· We ask the San Diego City Council and the San Diego Planning Commission to consider the merits of Quartyard, and consider the importance of the continued presence of Quartyard to the downtown community, and the disruption of approving the Holland Partners project without a new, long-term location identified and secured for the urban park.
Are you ready to give up Quartyard, Your City Block? Sign this petition at let your elected officials know you want to SAVE QUARTYARD!
For more detailed information, visit SaveQuartyard.com
Authored by Ryan Darby, East Village resident and attorney; Vince Vasquez, former East Village resident and civic activist.
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