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Private Contributions Vital to Balboa Park’s Maintenance

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Aired 4/19/09

The Balboa Park Trust announced today it has passed the $1 million mark in private contributions. But the money is a drop in the bucket compared to the maintenance backlog at Balboa Park, which is one of San Diego's main attractions. KPBS reporter Alison St John has more.

Balboa Park needs well over $230 million worth of upgrades. That's according to an independent report issued earlier this year. 

Vicki Granowitz, chair the Balboa Park Committee, says that estimate could be low balling the true cost. But she says private donations like the ones made to the Balboa Park Trust are vital to keep the park functioning.

Granowitz: They funded replacing the trash cans in Balboa Park, the pumps for the fountain, they're willing to fund the things that aren't sexy.

Balboa Park is ramping up to celebrate its centennial in 2015, and the city of San Diego does not have the money to cover the deferred maintenance.

The city plans to borrow to fix leaky roofs at the park but Granowitz says maintenance operations will be cut under this year's pared down city budget.

Alison St John, KPBS News.

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