If the decision were up to the Downtown San Diego Partnership, the answer would be a resounding “Yes.” The businesses and residents who participate in the nonprofit have been asking for a downtown-only shuttle for years.
One common qualm among Downtown San Diego residents is the challenge posed by parking and increasing traffic. If a person lives in an East Village condo and wants to grocery shop in the Core District, chances are he or she will drive to avoid walking with heavy bags. An on-demand shuttle that provides rides for little or no cost would eliminate the need to drive from one downtown point to the next, allowing residents and visitors to park once and shuttle around.
Although taxi cab drivers feel like the service would cause them to lose even more business, proponents of the shuttle service argue it could significantly improve current and future mobility concerns affecting the downtown area. Similar shuttles have successfully launched in D.C. and Denver. A statement from Kris Michelle, the partnership’s CEO, reads in part:
The Downtown Partnership believes a circulator system is an essential piece of the mobility puzzle. It will alleviate the demand for parking, offset the need for increased parking, decrease traffic congestion and positively impact the environment by emitting zero greenhouse gas emissions. Cities across the country have implemented costly circulator shuttle concepts. Rather than duplicating those models, San Diego will solve its mobility challenges with an innovative, cost effective solution. This is a no brainer for Downtown San Diego and we look forward to its implementation.
What does this mean for current residents or folks looking to buy Downtown San Diego real estate? Well, funding for the shuttle would come from garage and parking meter revenue, and if the $1 million budget from Civic San Diego gets the OK, the shuttle service could be up and running as early as summer. ')}