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Bill Would Protect San Diego's Urban Canyons

Democratic State Senator Christine Kehoe wants to protect 7,000 acres of urban canyons in San Diego. The city council supports the measure.

Bill Would Protect San Diego's Urban Canyons

A local lawmaker wants to protect 7,000 acres of urban canyons in San Diego. Democratic State Senator Christine Kehoe says the canyons that run through San Diego are the lungs of the city -- like pockets of air in between miles of concrete.

Kehoe introduced a bill that classifies those canyons as dedicated open space. That means no one can build in the canyons without a vote of the people. Kehoe says when she served on the city council, there were applications for new homes, multi-unit development.

Kehoe: Sometimes, just individuals wanting to extend a deck or something. And the city had protections, but it was always under discussion. And the threat was always there.

Kehoe says her measure would eliminate that threat. The city council is behind the bill, and there's bipartisan support in the state legislature.

Andrew Phelps, KPBS News.