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Scaled-back fence tentatively approved for Del Mar's bluffs

Del Mar wants to get trains off its bluffs
Posted at 5:42 PM, Jan 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-21 00:42:49-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — North County Transit District's board tentatively approved a scaled-back version of a blufftop fence in Del Mar, if the city will accept ownership and liability.

On Thursday, the board voted to give Del Mar a Feb. 28 deadline to accept the terms, otherwise a six-foot-tall black welded wire mesh fence will line the bluffs.

The city and the agency have been negotiating for more than a year on the bluffs. NCTD says they need to be protected due to constant joggers, walkers and surfers illegally crossing the tracks, which they have been doing for decades. The agency says it is about safety, liability and curbing trespasser interruptions.

Del Mar says a six-foot-tall fence, which would cut off its upper bluffs, is too extreme and harms quality of life.

Instead, it advocated for at-grade crossings and select fencing. The two agencies worked together to come up with a compromise that included small fences in some areas, maintaining more blufftop access. However, they could not sign an agreement due to the city needing to take on ownership and maintenance.

In a letter sent this week, the state Attorney General warned NCTD that it does not have final say on the project, which NCTD contends.