Circulate San Diego logo
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – September 13, 2022

Contact: Colin Parent

619-567-6856 | [email protected]


SAN DIEGO (September 15, 2022) - Last night local nonprofit Circulate San Diego awarded a number of individuals and public agencies with “Momentum Awards,” as a part of Circulate’s annual awards event.

The Momentum Awards highlights and celebrates the leaders who have made meaningful progress in improving public transit, making safer streets, and promoting sustainable growth across San Diego County.

More than 350 people attend the event at the San Diego National History Museum in beautiful Balboa Park. Guests included regional elected officials, staff from SANDAG, MTS, and members of the business and nonprofit sectors specializing in transportation and land use.

“Circulate San Diego was proud to recognize so many great projects and individuals in San Diego,” said Colin Parent, Executive Director and General Counsel. “We are grateful that so many people came out to celebrate our region’s progress.”

The awards presented eight community nominated awards. Also, three leaders were presented with Walk-The-Walk Award. This award is presented to local or state-wide leader who is improving mobility choices and advancing sustainable growth. Governor Gavin Newsom, was one of this year’s Walk-The-Walk Awardees.

In accepting his award, Governor Newsom praised Circulate San Diego. “Your work, your advocacy, on sustainable growth has been critical when it comes to housing and transportation as we all know is inextricable linked everyone needs to get around safely, everyone needs to get around conveniently and affordably – particularly those in underserved communities.”

The event also included pre-recorded remarks from Governor Gavin Newsom, which are now available online.

All award winners are listed below. Photos from the event are attached to this release.

2022 Momentum Award Winners

Vision Zero Award

Winner: Local Roadway Safety Plan Project (County of San Diego and Linscott, Law & Greenspan, Engineers)

The County of San Diego, in partnership with Linscott, Law & Greenspan, Engineers, created the Local Roadway Safety Plan to analyze and understand the trends of traffic collisions across the region. A critical element to preparing the plan was to integrate health and equity into the process. The project team ensured the Safety Plan would be part of the solution to tackle the challenges of dismantling our region’s transportation injustices by providing equal access to healthy, reliable, and safer transportation network to all roadway users – including walkers and bikers. With this in mind, the Safety Plan identified a list of criteria, including Collision Severity, Collision Rate, and Health/Equity. This Project is moving the County of San Diego towards zero deaths and severe injuries on the roadways, because every life counts.

Connectivity Award

Winner: Georgia -Meade Bikeway (SANDAG)

The Georgia – Meade Bikeway is the first of many urban neighborhood bikeways to open in 2022. The multi-modal corridor in the North Park and Mid-City communities, connects University Heights, North Park, Normal Heights, and Kensington-Talmadge. When finished, this network will connect Mid-City Bikeways from Hillcrest to the west and La Mesa to the east. The project enhances neighborhood connections to schools, shopping centers, restaurants, and parks, especially for students and people with limited travel mode choices - transforming Meade Avenue and Georgia Street from corridors that prioritized vehicles to corridors that prioritize and connect people and communities.

Sustainable Growth

Winner #1: Parco (Malick Infill and Protea Properties)

Looking to revitalize and create a walkable urban core, Parco was designed prove walkable urbanism works in Southern California. Located in Downtown National City, Parco is a 127-units mixed-use development envisioned as a launch point for the neighborhood’s next chapter as a vibrant urban center. The first major project delivered under National City’s new Specific Plan, the project focuses on being both a good neighbor and catalyst for future urban growth. Designed with versatility in mind, this complex appeals to a wide-ranging demographic. From four-bedroom street-front apartments with a secure courtyard, to two-bedroom Terrace Townhomes, to single occupant studios, the development is designed to support everyone. Families, couples, singles, and young military personnel leaving base all have a home at Parco.

Winner #2: Park and Market, The Merian (Holland Partners and UCSD)

Completed in 2021 and developed by Holland Partner Group, the Park & Market project includes 426 apartments, a 67,000-square-foot office and classroom building for UCSD, along with renovated historic house and an outdoor amphitheater. The UCSD building itself is a four-story, flexibly designed and multi-use space easily accessible by the UC San Diego Blue Line Trolley running between the university’s La Jolla campus and the U.S.-Mexico border. This project reaffirms our responsibility to nurture inclusiveness, create access to our world-class resources and build vital connections locally and globally.

Complete Streets Award

Winner: Fourth & Fifth Avenue Bikeways (SANDAG).
The Fourth and Fifth Avenue Bikeways project is one of the most transformative active transportation projects in the state of California. It includes 4.5 miles of protected bike lanes connecting the neighborhoods of Downtown, Bankers Hill, and Hillcrest. The project completes a key connection in the Regional Bike Network and transformed the existing streets to make biking, walking, and connecting to transit more comfortable for all users regardless of age or ability.

This is a shining example of how thoughtful design and creative engineering solutions can improve the quality of life for those who live, work, visit, and travel through our region. The project includes regionally innovative features like floating bus islands, dedicated intersections, and bike signals, and is the first bikeway project of its type – due to the length, improvement intensity, community context, and bikeway separation features – to be constructed in the San Diego region.

Innovation Award

Winner #1: Avanzando San Ysidro Community Land Trust (Casa Familiar)
Community Land Trust is an innovative project that would be the first of its kind in California. The Trust will develop 100 rental units, financed through Low Income Housing Tax Credits. After 15 years the rental properties will convert to resident ownership, purchasing their 1, 2 or 3 bedroom units. This transition to ownership will create stable housing options that are currently out of reach for most of San Ysidro’s neighbors. Governed by a board of resident stakeholders, that dictate the terms of sales and rents to keep them affordable. This allows for the initial investments and subsidy to remain in the project while market prices continue to rise. The goal is to ensure permanent affordability and create long-lasting community control of the land.

Winner #2: Youth Opportunity Passes (Mid-City CAN and the San Diego Transportation Equity Working Group)

The Youth Opportunity Pass is a community-led campaign to ensure young people have access of transportation. These passes would allow every young person in San Diego County to ride public transportation at no cost, provide better opportunities for our youth, develop new transit riders and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The current Youth Opportunity Pass pilot program will run until June 2023. Connecting youth to school, medical care, internships, and other opportunities. The campaign coalition included Mid-City CAN and the San Diego Transportation Equity Working Group.

Mid-Coast Award

Winner: Better Bikeways Initiative (UCSD & Kimley Horn)

UC San Diego Campus Planning, Transportation Services, and Facilities Management partnered with Kimley-Horn Associates and Linscott, Law & Greenspan to improve bike infrastructure across campus and improve connection to the larger Mid-Coast region. UCSD is committed to Making the Most of the Mid-Coast. The Better Bikeways Initiative reimagines transportation uses, by introducing traffic calming measures and introducing upgraded bike facilities - emphasizing on Class 4 bike lanes. Impacting all areas of the campus, including upgrades to Campus Point Drive, east Voigt Drive, and Gilman Drive, completing the missing link in the regional Coastal Trail and connecting to planned City of San Diego improvements. The project saw two campus firsts – a hard barrier protected bike lanes and a floating transit boarding island.

Public Voice Award

Winner: Jennifer Van Grove (San Diego Union Tribune)

Jennifer Van Grove covers growth and development for The San Diego Union Tribune. She is an award-winning journalist with more than a decade of experience reporting on business news. Jennifer has been providing excellent coverage across a wide range of issue areas related to development, transportation, and housing. Her stories have helped inform the public about some of the biggest public policy issues facing our region, from connecting transit to the airport, to the future of the coastal 30-foot height limit. Her stories have also provided ongoing and detailed coverage of many important land development deals, many of which involve substantial public properties, including the Sports Arena, Tailgate Park, and 1350 Front Street. She is a San Diego native and a graduate of UCLA.

Advocate Award

Winner #1: Sara Garcia

Sara Garcia is a Girl Scout in middle school who made a difference with her Girl Scout Silver Award Take Action Project. Sara built a bike repair station in her community because she wanted folks to have the option to fix their bikes on the road instead of having to pause their rides and go home. Sara, led her volunteer team and built a partnership with the San Diego County Parks Department to strategically place the two stations in locations that would best serve her community and created a long-term maintenance strategy. Innovators and leaders like Sara are why I am so proud to be a San Diegan.

Winner#2: Fourth District Seniors Resource Center - Glide N Stride Walkers

For nearly a decade, the Fourth District Seniors Resource Center’s Glide N Stride Walkers, have been encouraging seniors to stay active and hosting guided walks multiple times a week to improve their health and stability. They are infrastructure advocates, too. When they noticed cracked sidewalks and a dangerous intersection they raised concerns with their city officials. Through their tenacity, Councilmember Monica Montgomery Steppe and Mayor Todd GLoria were able to direct city workers to improve cross walks, cracked sidewalks, and signage.

Walk the Walk Awards

Winner #1: City Council Member Joe LaCava

Over the past several years, calls for the City to consider reforms to Community Planning Groups have come from many sources, including the San Diego County Grand Jury, the City Auditor, the Land Use and Housing Committee of the San Diego City Council, and Circulate San Diego – with our ground-breaking report “Democracy in Planning," in 2018. But no one has championed reform more than, City Council Member Joe LaCava. His vision and leadership culminated in yesterday’s City Council 6-1 vote to make meaningful and critical changes to how Community Planning groups are run. These will continue to exist under an updated Council Policy, but as an independent body expected to be composed of designated with broader and more diverse representation.

Winner #2: Governor Gavin Newsom

Through his leadership in signing sustainable growth legislation, like SB 9 sponsored by Senate President Pro temp Toni Atkins, and our own Circulate sponsored bill, led by Assembly Member Lorena Gonzalez AB 2345, the Governor has made good on his promise to reform housing and land use regulations. Since its launch in 2020, Governor Newsom’s Project Homekey initiative has been the fastest, largest, most cost-effective addition of permanent housing in California history, successfully re-engineering the strategy to create more housing for people experiencing homelessness.

Winner #3: Laura Keenan

Laura’s story and courage have touched many of us. After the tragic death of her husband, Laura Keenan founded Families for Safe Streets San Diego. We know that Matt’s legacy will live on through safer streets for walkers and bikers across the Diego region. One nominator put it best, “Laura's ability to channel her grief into advocacy for safety for others, so that no one has to experience what her family has, is an inspiration to our community. Her strength and bravery in taking on an advocacy role is admirable.” We know this is just a small honor, but we hope that this shows how much our community appreciates your work and dedication. Tonight, is the one-year anniversary of Matt’s death, our streets are still not safe for those walking and riding, but through our shared work Vision Zero is possible.

About Circulate San Diego
Circulate San Diego is a regional nonprofit think tank dedicated to advancing mobility and making the region a better place to move, work, learn and play. Our work focuses on creating great mobility choices, more walkable and bikeable neighborhoods, and land uses that promote sustainable growth. For more information, go