Morena United Sues City of San Diego over the Morena Corridor Specific Plan


On October 10, 2019, the citizens group MORENA UNITED filed suit in the Superior Court against the City of San Diego over its approval of the Morena Corridor Specific Plan (MCSP) and the City’s related failure to comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

The lawsuit contends the City abused its discretion by approving an inadequate Environmental Impact Report (EIR).  The EIR’s shortcomings include the failure to adequately analyze indirect and cumulative effects of the MCSP such as Air Quality, Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Visual Effects, and Transportation and Traffic impacts. The Complaint further alleges the EIR failed to analyze reasonable alternatives and feasible mitigation measures.

The Complaint also charges that the MCSP violates and is inconsistent with the San Diego General Plan, the Linda Vista Community Plan, the Clairemont Mesa Community Plan, and the Climate Action Plan.

The lawsuit seeks vacating the City Council’s approval of the EIR and the MCSP.  It asks the court to restrain the City from taking any steps to implement the MCSP until lawful approval is obtained after the preparation and consideration of an adequate environmental analysis.  MORENA UNITED is represented by the well-established land use firm of DeLano & DeLano, 760-741-1200.

MORENA UNITED is made up of residents, business owners and property owners who live in or do business in and around the area impacted by the MCSP. MORENA UNITED believes reasonable growth can be accomplished while preserving the quality of life in the area affected by the MCSP, including health and safety, reasonable traffic circulation, and protection of the environment.

For three-and-a half years planning groups in Linda Vista and Clairemont listened to the City’s proposals and provided public input.  For the Planning Department, these meetings were so much “check the box” of public participation. The Department had its predetermined outcome it was going to impose.

The Planning Department told citizens they had to get their comments about the MCSP to the Department by a specified date in August 2017.  People complied and the comments were ignored.  In September 2018, the Planning Department announced building heights in the Plan Area would only be 45 feet.  Then the mayor changed his mind and the building heights were raised back to 100 feet.  The Planning Department told the community to provide comments about the Plan’s EIR, and the Linda Vista Planning Group submitted 20 pages of comments.  The comments were brushed aside.

Finally, Morena United retained legal counsel and an Air Quality expert to advise the City how the MCSP was deficient.  Morena United provided these reports to the City Council in advance of its first vote on August 1, 2019.  The information was ignored by the Planning Department and the Council, which approved the Plan.

At the second Council vote on September 10, 2019, Morena United again pointed out the deficiencies in the MCSP and the EIR.  The Council did not engage over those issues and simply gave final approval to the Plan.  Essentially, the City drove the community to file suit.

For more information about MORENA UNITED, please go to:

For further information about the lawsuit, please contact: