Special election set for Carlsbad lagoon development

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CARLSBAD, Calif. – The Carlsbad City Council voted Tuesday night to hold a special election on Feb. 23 for the proposed plan to build an upscale retail and dining center that would overlook the Hedionda Lagoon.

The controversial “85/15” plan to build an outdoor shopping mall at the sight of the historic strawberry fields in Carlsbad will be put on the ballot at the cost of $500,000.

The group Citizens for North County formed to oppose the plan by Los Angeles developer Caruso Affiliated that would develop the center but also preserve 85 percent of about 203 acres that has been used for decades to grow strawberries. Last month, opponents of the plan announced they had collected enough valid petition signatures to put the plan to a public vote.

The City Council was cornered with a ballot initiative, forcing them to make a decision Tuesday to do one of three things: rescind their support for project, set a date for a special election or set the election on the November general election ballot. Opposition leaders pushed for the election to be held Nov. 8, 2016, while supporters successfully advocated for the special election to be held Feb. 23, 2016.


  • LisaASheppard

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  • Don Burton

    They could have also put it on the June ballot. The cowards took the easy road and simply doubled-down on their support for Caruso and their blatant disregard for their avowed fiscal “conservatism”. Not to mention they also ignored the people who spoke, both with words and actions, to oppose this travesty. After the vote, there WILL be consequences come the next election.

  • Jeb Hase

    When the city council initially approved this, they used as their main reason that they couldn’t possibly justify the costs of a special election. By choosing this road…they show how they are all in the pocket of the developer. I even heard he wined and dined them of his mega million yacht. True or not, there is an appearance that the council has been bought and paid for by the billionaire Caruso. Everyone who uses the I-5 , Carlsbad resident or not, should be against the increased traffic this would bring to Cannon with its one small short exit lane that won’t be altered for some 15 years. Traffic will back up onto the freeway like it already does at Paloma’s Airport northbound with its multi lane exit onto a 3 lane road. Cannon isn’t made to handle this huge mall that will open at the same hours as Legoland.

  • Josh

    The wording of this article implies that the strawberry fields are being removed, when actually the fields will be doubled in size under the 85/15 plan. The fields will be permanent as well, no longer leased on a year-to-year basis through the original landowner SDG&E.

  • Jeb Hase

    Another thing, ‘saving the strawberry fields’. – well they are to be moved inland . What you will see from the freeway will be the back side of the three story car garage (a paid parking garage to shop). Then comes the large mall (twice the size of the outlet stores) where the fields are now. The pretty watercolor drawings don’t exactly ‘paint’ the real picture. I mean a gravel path leading into Nordstrom….I doubt it. The city should at least present (require) an accurate visual of what is to be built for voters to see. Voters should at least see a factual rendering of the project and not just a builders promotional material when being presented with a vote. The walking paths touted will have one piece that just walks right along Cannon Rd. Not exactly relaxing ‘open space’ walking people. What people now picture as open space walking will become just a walk next to a crowded mall, not exactly the same thing.

  • thechurchofchrismartin

    Good for the citizens of Carlsbad! They took matters into their own hands and forced an election to let the people decide this issue. Shame on those politicians on the Carlsbad City Council. I hope EVERY LAST ONE OF THEM that voted for the LA carpet-bagger’s grand Nordstrom plan by the water get VOTED OFF the council because they have shown their true colors and it is GREEN, GREEN, GREEN!

  • whatajoke

    What a collosal waste of taxpayer money holding a special election. Are the voters in Carlsbad going to keep this current collection of MORONS on the city council? Vote them back to where they belong – in overdeveloped Orange County.

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