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City sponsors Barrio plan workshop

CARLSBAD — Barrio residents and property owners brainstormed with neighbors March 10 to draft a working plan for the future of one of Carlsbad’s oldest neighborhood at a city-sponsored Envision Carlsbad workshop.
More than 50 people attended the workshop at the Carlsbad Senior Center, 799 Pine Avenue, to provide ideas and suggestions that would preserve and improve the Barrio neighborhood.
“We’re here to listen to you and to hear what your hopes and dreams are for the Barrio area,” Community and Economic Development Director Gary Barberio said. “This is a unique neighborhood in need of attention to revive it and revitalize it.”
The neighborhood was originally built in the 1920s and is approximately 150 acres in Carlsbad’s northwest quadrant. Its boundaries are I-5 on the east, the railroad tracks on the west, Tamarack Avenue to the south and Oak Avenue to the north, Barberio said.
Workshop participants discussed a number of topics, ranging from the historical and cultural significance of the Barrio to how to beautify the neighborhood.
Residents also touched on whether more multi-family housing units are needed, limiting commercial businesses, and installing traffic calming measures on main thoroughfares.
“I’d like to see buildings preserved because there’s a lot of history here,” lifelong Barrio resident Patsy Rodriguez said. “We don’t need anything new — that’s the beauty of living here, everything’s within walking distance.”
Participants were unanimous in their desires to see Pine Avenue Park completed; better lighting throughout the neighborhood; installation of sidewalks; and creating a connection across the railroad tracks at Chestnut Avenue.
“We’re basically the only neighborhood in Carlsbad that’s fenced off from the beach,” resident Michael Hedrick said. “What used to be a five-block walk to the beach is now 15 blocks since they installed the fence.”
Overall, residents were pleased with the workshop that allowed them an opportunity to voice their opinions directly to those city staff and consultants involved with the Envision Carlsbad project.
“This has been very interesting,” Barrio resident Toni Perrine said. “It’s a great turnout and there have been a lot of good ideas that were mentioned; I just hope that some of the ideas come to pass.”
Comments from the Barrio workshop will be compiled for review at an upcoming Envision Carlsbad Citizens Committee meeting on March 23. Meetings are held at the Faraday Center, 1635 Faraday Avenue, and are open to the public.
For more information about the Envision Carlsbad program, visit carlsbadca.gov.