National City 8th Street Corridor and Smart Growth Plan
KTU+A worked with the City of National City on the preparation of a submittal package for the 2009-2010 SANDAG Smart Growth Capital Improvement Project Grant. The project successfully received grant funding and KTU+A is currently working on the implementation plans. The project identifies six blocks for an intensive downtown retail shopping district and another six blocks of pedestrian improvements and connections to the trolley station. Alternative street cross sections were evaluated and a one lane for each direction with left turn pockets, modified medians and pedestrian bulb-outs were proposed. A key feature of the application is the integration of a storefront improvement program, utility undergrounding, and the redevelopment of two blocks of infill projects with live work lofts, ground floor open market space, artist lofts, and other residential development, including eight story rentals with inclusionary affordable housing. The project ties together Kimball Park, Heritage Row, City Hall, and Morgan Plaza. “A” Street and 8th Street will be the centerpiece of the project, with a weekly farmer’s market extending from the high ceiling open bay market spaces proposed along the edge of the street. A full range of pedestrian safety improvements, lighting and bike facilities have also been added to encourage non-motorized mobility. Mixed uses and an efficient use of land, close proximity to several training and educational facilities, and support from bus and light rail transit, contribute to the smart growth principles, and represent a valuable opportunity to support the existing businesses along this street.