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City of San Marcos Has Spent $750M on Roads, Parks and Sewers; Expects to Spend $500M More

Time is often the measure of success.

Commonly heard questions include, “How long does it take to do something?” and “Do we have time?”

Once in awhile it is kind of nice to look back and remind ourselves of the way things used to be in another time.

Here are some examples of how it used to be in 1907:

– & #8201;Only 8 percent of the homes had a telephone.

– & #8201;The average wage was 22 cents an hour.

– & #8201;An annual wage was between $200 and $400.

– & #8201;There were 8,000 cars in the United States.

– & #8201;The maximum speed limit in most towns was 10 miles per hour.

Well, time does change things.

The Carlsbad municipal golf course, The Crossings at Carlsbad, took two decades to be planned, and it will finally open Aug. 5 to public play.

When the course operator, KemperSports, began taking tee time reservations, the phone and computer systems were immediately overloaded.

The Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce is holding the first golf tournament on Aug. 6 and it sold out in nine days.

I guess time did not wear out the desire for citizens to play golf.

In the last 20 years, the city of San Marcos has grown to 40,000 residents from 20,000.

The residents have waited for the city to grow its infrastructure and amenities, and the time waiting may soon be over.

The city expects to see more than $1 billion in development in the next decade or so.

One project in the San Marcos Creekside District is projected for 217 acres with mixed-use development, parks, condos, apartments and commercial and retail buildings totaling millions of square feet.

The city is looking at $100 million in new infrastructure.

The government there spent $750 million on roads, parks and sewer systems and expects to spend another $500 million during the next decade.

Private investment in new development will top the $1 billion mark when completed.

The city, once serving only as a bedroom community to San Diego, is booming.

Time will no longer pass them by.

For more than a decade, the city of Vista has wanted a new City Hall as a state-of-the-art symbol of good government.

The wait is over.

A new $41 million Vista Civic Center is scheduled for completion in 2010.

The city is touting the building’s state-of-the-art Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design concept. LEED, a green building rating system of the U.S. Green Building Council, is at the top of the heap in environmental standards for new construction.

In other North County news:

– & #8201;Solana Beach also has a clock running on a major development project at its train station. Cedros Crossing is in its final stages of clearance with the city and North County Transit District. The clock is running for the developer to claim a $6 million state grant earmarked for a critical part of the project, a garage that is the linchpin for the project. Cedros would include apartments, shops and a new home for the North Coast Repertory Theatre. To receive the money, the NCTD needs to build a $15 million garage to provide the foundation for the project. The City Council has appointed an ad hoc committee to work out the stumbling blocks on the $50 million project.

– & #8201;The residential real estate market is in trouble, some say. However, I say that is not really the case. With skyrocketing equity being produced , 71 percent during the last five years , it is no wonder folks think the time has come for a pullback in housing costs and sales. The reality is that we are beginning to see realistic equity returns. San Diego remains the sixth most expensive housing market in the nation with 5 percent of its new homes affordable to median-income families.

– & #8201;The city of Carlsbad is analyzing the possibility of allowing a Wal-Mart store on the corner of El Camino Real and College Boulevard on a 17-acre site. I know that the fight will center on Wal-Mart’s promises for an upscale store. Residents want a Nordstrom, not necessarily a Wal-Mart. So I have an idea. Why not name the proposed Wal-Mart something like Wal-Strom, or Nord-Mart? It might pass the acceptance test much easier.


Ted Owen is president and CEO of the Carlsbad Chamber of Commerce.

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