Another downtown project moving forward in Oceanside

OCEANSIDE — City Council approved a disposition and development agreement for a downtown mixed-use project on Aug. 19, which will also provide free public parking.

The agreement with Pelican Brooks Street Oceanside, LLC, will build 38 to 54 residential units, 10,000 square feet of retail space, and more than 400 parking spaces at 300 Cleveland Street.

The planned parking structure is six levels. Residents will have exclusive access to 80 spaces on the underground level through a separate entrance. The rest of the above-ground parking will be open to the public.

The city owns the parking structure on the site, and grants Pelican Properties easement to the residential parking spaces.

Pelican owns the ground beneath the mixed-use building, and grants the city easement over its property for vehicles to enter the parking structure at the west end of the lot.

Dick Hamm, member of Pelican Properties, said the agreement is a true win, win for Pelican Properties and the city. He said the city will have more parking, a prettier project and the benefits of property and retail taxes.

“There will be income for perpetuity,” Hamm added about Pelican building around the parking structure.

There will be between 325 and 355 public parking spaces. Hamm said construction of the parking structure still needs to go to bid. The goal is to build as many parking spaces as funds allow.

The city is paying  $7.5 million to build the parking structure, and Pelican Properties is paying the city a parking easement of $1.51 million. City funds come from former redevelopment, TransNet and capital improvement project monies.

The developer also bought the city land for $457,760 as part of the agreement.

The project still needs to go through entitlement before groundbreaking can begin.

“We’re hoping for approval in late fall,” Hamm said.

City Council members said the project is a welcome addition to downtown, which had two heavily used temporary parking lots closed forever.

Councilman Jerry Kern said his only disappointment is that the project didn’t happen sooner. The project weathered through the dissolution of the city redevelopment committee and formation of the oversight committee, before city land could be sold to the developer.

“It was a bureaucratic nightmare to get this done,” Kern said. “I wish we could have had parking in place now.”

Kern said development planned for the five-block area where the project is located will create a much more vibrant downtown. He added in the meantime, current businesses need to hold on during construction.

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