As our city grapples with producing more housing, the amount of accessible natural
open space is becoming increasingly scarce, especially near the beaches and bays. As
an undeveloped open space park near the water, Fiesta Island is the last of its type in
Tens of thousands of residents and visitors use the undeveloped open space park each
year to recreate, hike, run, ride bicycles, fish, wade and swim in the bay, exercise while
their dogs run free, and just enjoy the physical and mental health benefits away from the
stress of urban living. In fact, the Mission Bay Park Master Plan said it best, “As an
open landscape, Fiesta Island should be the place where city residents and
visitors alike find the ultimate refuge from urban congestion, noise and visual
In the spring of 2018, city residents were asked to respond to a Parks Master Plan
survey. Three of the top five priorities by respondents were: Beaches and Shoreline
Parks, Open Space/Trails, and Off-leash Dog Parks. Fiesta Island’s 90-acre off-leash
area provides all three. Citizens want more, not less, of what Fiesta Island has to offer.
At a time when the City has a major deficit of neighborhood and off-leash parks/access
and is losing more open space to dense development projects, the preservation of the
fenced-in open space park on Fiesta Island should be a priority.
Unfortunately, a section of Fiesta Island is in danger of development. On May 23, the
City Council’s Environment Committee is considering two amendments to the Fiesta
Option A would put a new paved road and fencing from the top of the area to the
southern shoreline to access a new boat storage area, cut through the contiguous
shoreline and berm path and completely change the character of the area.
Option B preserves the area intact and would require minimal ongoing maintenance and
does not reduce access for existing uses.
As three former council members who fought for years to preserve open space on Fiesta
Island, and are deeply concerned about the quality of life of our citizens and our
environment, we ask that you join us in asking city council members to please support
Option B. Option B retains all public parkland as it is today, an undeveloped multi-use
recreation area that is environmentally friendly, safe, and free to the public.
Save Open Space. Support Option B by calling and/or emailing city council members
and the Mayor’s office. Your voice matters.
Submitted by former San Diego City Councilmembers Donna Frye, Sherri Lightner and