Harbor Drive Landscape Improvement Project


SCH Number
Public Agency
San Diego Unified Port District
Document Title
Harbor Drive Landscape Improvement Project
Document Type
NOE - Notice of Exemption
Document Description
The proposed project would involve landscape improvements by the District (Applicant) along the Northwest side of Harbor Island. North Harbor Drive is a heavily trafficked street and the areas adjacent to the street are often the first impression that arriving air travelers to the region receive. On the north side of North Harbor Drive the San Diego International Airport has deployed an updated landscape palette that is inclusive of small and medium sized cobble, boulders and colorful water-wise plants supported by drip irrigation. The District will deploy a similar landscaping approach at Spanish Landing Park adjacent to North Harbor Drive. The project improvements are located on North Harbor Drive, from the Nimitz Bridge at Spanish Landing Park West to the intersection of North Harbor Drive and Harbor Island Drive. Landscape and irrigation improvements consist of removing existing landscaping and installation of new landscaping material. The project includes the following components: Approximately 171,600 square feet (3.9 acres) of re-vegetation and landscape planting. Removal of existing landscape material, including plant material, mulch, cobblestone, boulders, and topsoil within existing landscape areas. Installation of new landscaping material and irrigation system within the existing 171,600 square foot landscaped areas, including water wise plants, box trees, bark mulch, rock cobble mulch, cobble stone, small boulders and decomposed granite. All plants will be lower water use and native. The irrigation system will utilize water conserving heads and drip irrigation equipment. The Project irrigation system will be fully automated and controlled by a weather based smart controller. A new approximately 500 square foot, 6 feet wide by 81 feet long, concrete walkway will be constructed from the existing sidewalk along North Harbor Drive at Airport Terminal Road from the intersection of the existing crosswalk to the Spanish Landing restroom facility. Two monument signs are proposed to be located at Spanish Landing Park West and Spanish Landing Park East with new Port of San Diego Secondary Amenity Identity monument signs. It is anticipated the construction staging for the proposed work will incorporate 5 areas within the existing Spanish Landing Park parking lot. These five staging areas have a cumulative footprint of approximately 7,385 square feet and will occupy approximately 40 parking spaces for the duration of the project. The proposed project is anticipated to begin in August 2023 and would take approximately five months to complete, finishing in December 2023. Due to its nature and limited scope, the proposed project would generate a minor amount of vehicle trips and would require limited use of equipment. Therefore, impacts related to air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, and transportation and traffic are not anticipated to occur. Furthermore, the Applicant would be responsible for complying with all applicable federal, state, and local laws regarding construction demolition debris, hazards and hazardous materials, and stormwater.

Contact Information

Lisa Madsen
Agency Name
Port of San Diego
Job Title
Senior Planner
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency


San Diego
San Diego
Cross Streets
North Harbor Drive
State Highways
Interstate 5
San Diego International Airport
San Diego Bay

Notice of Exemption

Exempt Status
Categorical Exemption
Type, Section or Code
SG § 15303 (Class 3), SG § 15304 (Class 4)
Reasons for Exemption
The proposed project is determined to be Categorically Exempt pursuant to the CEQA Guidelines and the Sections of the District’s Guidelines for Compliance with CEQA as identified above. These are appropriate for the proposed project because it would result in no permanent effects on the environment, and would not involve the removal of mature, scenic trees and is for the purpose of new construction and landscaping work which would not result in a serious or major disturbance to an environmental resource. The District has determined none of the six exceptions to the use of a categorical exemption apply to this project (CEQA Guidelines Section 15300.2). Categorical Exemptions: SG §15303, Class 3/Section 3.c: New Construction or Conversion of Small Structures; and SG §15304, Class 4/Section 3.d: Minor Alterations to Land 3.c. New Construction of Conversion of Small Structures (SG § 15303) (Class 3): Includes construction of limited numbers of new, small facilities or structures; installation of small new equipment and facilities in small structures; and conversion of existing small structures from one use to another with minor modifications to the exterior of the structure. Examples of this exemption include: (2) Accessory (appurtenant) structures and mechanical equipment including, but not limited to, garages, sheds, railway spur tracks, pilings, temporary trailers, industrial equipment enclosures, fences, parking, on-site roadways, walkways and health and safety devices. AND/OR 3.d. Minor Alterations to Land (SG § 15304) (Class 4): Includes minor alterations in the condition of land, water and/or vegetation not involving removal of mature, scenic trees, including, but not limited to: (5) New gardening or landscaping.
County Clerk
San Diego


Disclaimer: The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) accepts no responsibility for the content or accessibility of these documents. To obtain an attachment in a different format, please contact the lead agency at the contact information listed above. You may also contact the OPR via email at state.clearinghouse@opr.ca.gov or via phone at (916) 445-0613. For more information, please visit OPR’s Accessibility Site.

Download CSV New Search Print