City Council unanimously approves contract to develop a Town Center parking plan 

After two decades of planning and one economic downturn, Dana Point's Town Center project appears to pushing forward on all cylinders. But questions still remain regarding development and parking. Photo by Andrea Papagianis
After two decades of planning and one economic downturn, Dana Point’s Town Center project appears to pushing forward on all cylinders. But questions still remain regarding development and parking. Photo by Andrea Papagianis

By Andrea Papagianis

As construction moves forward to transform Dana Point’s Town Center into a pedestrian-friendly destination, city staff is looking to neighboring San Clemente to answer their parking questions.

You cannot talk about changes coming to Dana Point’s downtown corridor, Town Center, without parking being brought up, Councilman Bill Brough said Tuesday night. But since revamp plans were approved by the California Coastal Commission in 2006, parking has been on the back burner, until now.

The Dana Point City Council unanimously approved a contract with the San Francisco-based Nelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates to develop a parking plan. Staff is considering a parking plan similar to San Clemente’s Avenida Del Mar, a mix of street and city leased lots, said Ursula Luna-Reynosa, the city’s community development director.

The $35,000 contract runs through April 30, 2014, at which time the city manager may approve additional work. The extension cannot exceed $10,000 according to the contract. Luna-Reynosa said the city is getting the Coastal Commission involved early on in the process, since commission approval can take more than a year. She said with early involvement the city hopes to address issues from the start to speed up the approval process.

The South Coast Water District is currently working to replace underground sewer and water utility lines down Pacific Coast Highway. Work will last until early next year, when the city is expected to start PCH street improvements.

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