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Neighbors upset after city approves building 20-story building in Bankers Hill

Posted at 6:12 PM, Jan 11, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-11 21:25:24-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Neighbors are upset after the San Diego City Council approved a project developing a 20-story building in Bankers Hill.

The mixed use building was recommended to have a height limit at 150 feet, then approved at 225 feet. Uptown Planners, a community planning group, appealed the decision, hoping the developer,

"This building just doesn't fit in with Bankers Hill," Ed Blitz, Committee Member of Bankers Hill 150, said. "The Uptown Planners recommended a 150-foot height limit, for buildings in this area in order to respect the architecture and respect the growth in the area," Ed's wife, and Steering Committee Member of BH 150, Sue Strom said.

RELATED: 20-story development in Bankers Hill has neighbors worried

"With the attraction or the variances granted due to affordable housing, I think Greystar is slipping the city a Mickey," Strom said, frustrated the developer is not abiding by the rules every other developer has been held to until this point.

The couple started a petition garnering hundreds of signatures. Their biggest issue with the development is the impact it could have on Balboa Park, by shading the grass across the street.

Blitz said he and his wife often walk along that section of the park, see others jogging, doing yoga and playing sports. He called the park San Diego's "gem" and compared the development project to the juxtaposition of the Coronado Shores condos sitting next to the Del Hotel.

The couple will be a part of a demonstration January 26th, where a group will outline the projected shadow and open big, black umbrellas to illustrate the effect the shadow would have on the park.

Neighbor Rebekah Leon was walking her dog through the park and told 10News she was not concerned, "it's only going to cast a shadow a couple hours out of the day, I'm not worried about it."

Something everyone could agree on was the need for more affordable housing.

"If they're truly concerned with affordable housing, lower the building and increase the density," Strom said. The building is currently designed to house 18 affordable units, replacing the 16 that will be demolished next to the cathedral.

"It's a great idea to have affordable units that kids can move into and help build up the area not only economically but socially as well," Leon said.

City Council will hear the appeal Jan. 28. 10News reached out to the developer and has not heard back.