Future Park at Waite Drive
In March 2012, the County of San Diego notified the City of La Mesa of the availability of the former Lemon Grove Road Station, a 2.84 acre site on the northwest corner of Waite Drive and Murray Hill Road in La Mesa. The property had undergone environmental cleanup in April 2000 and in December 2011, the Department of Environmental Health (DEH) signed off and closed the case. As part of its due diligence, the City of La Mesa hired an outside consultant to conduct an Environmental Site Assessment of the property to confirm there were no remaining hazardous materials.
On July 2012, the site was purchased by the City for $650,000, over the course of 4-year period using park impact fees which are designed to mitigate the impact of new development on municipalities, existing facilities and infrastructure for residential developments.
The 2012 City of La Mesa Park Master Plan identified a future park at Waite Drive and Murray Hill Road as a valuable option for a potential park site to partially meet the City’s neighborhood park deficiency.
From 2012 - 2022 the vacant property had been used intermittently by City contractors and partner agencies for construction material laydown.
In December 2021, the City received funding through the California State Department of Recreation Local Assistance Specified Grant program to create a master plan for the proposed park.
A community workshop was held on Wednesday, March 16, 2022 via Zoom to provide information for the plan to build a new park, introduce existing conditions and future opportunities and to gather input and priorities. The workshop was followed by a survey to gather additional information from the public (From March 16 - April 11, 2022)
View the March 16, 2022 workshop HERE
View the March 16, 2022 workshop presentation slides
A second community workshop was held on June 15, 2022 at Helix Charter High School and via Zoom to provide an update on the results of public input received from the March 16, 2022 workshop and community input survey. Two concept plans for the park were presented for attendees to provide feedback.
View the June 15, 2022 workshop slides HERE
View the June 15, 2022 workshop recording HERE
On Saturday, June 18, a tour of the site was offered for attendees to see the two proposed concept plans and provide input towards the final concept plan. Written comments about the two concepts were collected June 15 -June 30, 2022.
The final proposed draft concept plan was presented at the Community Services Commission and on zoom on September 14, 2022.
The draft park master plan was presented to the Community Services Commission on December 14, 2022 and January 11, 2023. The draft document was available for review and comments on the document were accepted December 16, 2022 - January 11, 2023. The updated draft plan was presented to City Council on January 24, 2023.
The City then prepared an initial study for the project in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). It was determined that the project does not have the potential to create a significant adverse effect on the environment. The Public Review Period was from June 1 - July 5, 2023.
A Final Initial Study Mitigated Negative Declaration, and the Master Plan were approved by City Council on October 10, 2023.