On the afternoon of March 23, a public meeting was held in the Winn Room of the Coronado Public Library in order to share early stages of Ferry Landing property enhancement planning with the Coronado community.
Representatives from the Ferry Landing, the Port of San Diego, and architects from the firm JWDA (Joseph Wong Design Associates) were on hand to share a slide presentation of renderings as well as answer questions.
The Ferry Landing enhancement project involves the western leasehold encompassing Peohe’s but not reaching Centennial Park. Topics covered included overall property beautification, curb appeal improvements, as well as an improved common area and landscaping. No building layouts are being modified nor additional parking being made.
Slides shown during the meeting included renderings from different angles during both nighttime and day as well as information about possible property and landscaping adjustments. Presenters shared how the landing’s red roofing distinctive to Coronado will be maintained, and the architects noted how rendered pictures often don’t do the colors justice.
Aspects discussed spanned ease of vehicle and pedestrian traffic, tree replacement for water conservation, shade structures with views in mind, improved outdoor furniture and energy efficiencies — flooring, restroom and trash receptacle area improvements — as well as sign consolidation to better clarify and brand the Ferry Landing.
With the property needing some upgrades over the years, one architect said he wasn’t going to say it but “there’s a diamond in the rough.” The rough edges can be smoothed with the presented wider spaces, cooler options and more seating available. Cart venders, fire pits, unique artistic features and a mix of tenants would be expected to add to the liveliness of the property. The presenters shared how they felt these things would draw people in.
As public comments opened up, attendees expressed a desire to work toward a design more in keeping with the ambiance of Coronado. Less contemporary and more charm, “less Disney and more Hotel Del” as one attendee said. Many seemed to agree that development is needed but they want to retain the natural, peaceful feel with some saying they want to be sure to retain the unencumbered viewing of summer and winter events such as the Parade of Lights.
Questions asked involved the public comment process, project submission to the Port, environmental studies, the Port Master Plan Update and timelines. Additionally, questions were answered that covered how the live bands will still perform and have space, the boat dock behind Peohe’s will still remain a dock ‘n dine, the beach areas belong to the Port and the cordoned off green space belongs to the City as an easement.
The current leasehold by Flagship Properties is until 2026, and it’s the lessee’s proposal that will go to the Port after public comment is taken into account.
Garry Bonelli (U.S. Navy-Ret.), former Coronado Port Commissioner, clarified the comment and Port process as well as encouraged the public to share any thoughts, and to press the Port for what’s desired during opportunities to comment.
Public comment should be submitted to [email protected] by April 23.
Kelly Sarber, whose family operates Costa Azul an the Landing, emphasized the “connective tissue here” and how the community isn’t looking to necessarily draw more people, but retain that peaceful venue.
The Ferry Landing is located at 1201 First Street at B Avenue