NewsLocal NewsSan Diego News


Official calls for Sunset Cliffs Natural Park closure after 'illegal gatherings'

Sunset Cliffs crowding
Posted at 11:08 AM, May 08, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-10 15:22:03-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Councilmember Jennifer Campbell is calling for the city to temporarily close Sunset Cliffs Natural Park over concerns that locals are not abiding by county health orders.

Campbell issued a statement, saying Sunset Cliffs has continued to be a concern after the city reopened beaches and parks for passive uses, like walking, running, and jogging.

The councilmember added that she is monitoring the area with Mayor Kevin Faulconer's office, but that the issue "is not getting any better."

RELATED: Sailor swept into ocean at Sunset Cliffs, neighbor demands shut down of park after dark

"Protecting public health has been a priority for me. I believe it’s time we take a step back to better assess the opening of Sunset Cliffs Natural Park to protect public health, discourage illegal gatherings and keep people safe," Campbell's statement read in part. "As a regional attraction Sunset Cliffs is more aligned with Mission Bay or Balboa Park and therefore similar restrictions should apply. I’m asking for Sunset Cliffs Natural Park (both linear and hillside sections) to be closed in the interest of public health and safety."

Several Sunset Cliffs residents have reached out to 10News over scenes of people gathering in groups, partying, and ignoring the county's health orders.

RELATED: As San Diegans return to beaches, visitors asked not to crowd Sunset Cliffs

Those worries came to a head last weekend, after a Navy sailor was swept out to sea and needed lifeguards to rescue him.

Resident Glen Volk sent an email to a slew of city and county officials demanding action.

RELATED: Tensions growing in Sunset Cliffs over big crowds after park reopens

"But even with police presence the situation here is barely tolerable and continues to spin out of control. Plus the police leave at 11:30 and after that it's game on again. How long must this go on?"

San Diego Police asked the public earlier this month not to crowd Sunset Cliffs, which brought locals out for the area's picturesque sunsets and the bioluminescence waves from the red tide.

RELATED: When, where you'll have to wear face coverings in San Diego County

"Friendly reminder, San Diego County has 70 awesome miles of coastline - please consider choosing a different location," SDPD posted on Facebook.

Campbell represents San Diego's Second Council District, which includes the communities of Bay Ho/Bay Park/Morena, Midway/North Bay, Mission Bay, Mission Beach, Ocean Beach, Pacific Beach and Point Loma.