Mayor Jerry Sanders
The Mayor released the following statement today after being informed by Dr. Irwin Jacobs that the Plaza de Panama Committee is suspending work on the Plaza de Panama restoration project. This morning, the Rules Committee failed to give conceptual support to the project, which among other things would have removed vehicular traffic from the historic core of Balboa Park, added more than 250 new parking spaces and provided more than six acres of pedestrian- and family-friendly park space:
"For the past year, it has been my honor to work with Dr. Irwin Jacobs on a plan to transform Balboa Park, perhaps the most beloved place in San Diego, and to begin solving its parking and circulation problems.
"I was impressed by Dr. Jacobs' vision in seeking to restore the historical integrity of the park's plazas and central core by removing automotive traffic, and by his generosity in offering to raise $25 million in private funds to see the project through.
"But I was especially impressed by his perseverance in the face of the mean-spirited attacks and false accusations that must be endured by anyone who tries to bring meaningful change to San Diego.
"The Plaza de Panama Committee's decision to suspend work on the restoration project in light of the lack of support today by the Rules Committee is a huge loss for all San Diegans, especially those who care about the future of Balboa Park.
"I applaud Dr. Jacobs for his wisdom and selflessness, and wish more San Diegans had his courage in the face of adversity."
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