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Del Mar Fairgrounds Announces Changes To Renovation Plans After Lawsuit Settlement

The operator of the Del Mar Fairgrounds announced today that it would move forward with renovations after settling a lawsuit over its master plan.

Photo by Alison St John

Don Moser, former Mayor of Del Mar, Lee Haydu, Deputy Mayor of Del Mar, Dave Roberts, Deputy Mayor of Solana Beach, Lisa Heebner of Solana Beach and Adam Day, President of the 22nd District Agricultural Association, sign an agreement to end a lawsuit over the Master Plan for the Del Mar Fairgrounds

The 22nd District Agricultural Association, the state agency that runs the fairgrounds, agreed to take several steps to settle the court action filed in May 2011 by the cities of Del Mar and Solana Beach and the San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority.

The litigation challenged the plan's environmental impact report. The sprawling park is home to the annual San Diego County Fair, thoroughbred horse racing, horse shows, an off-track wagering facility and numerous trade shows.

"An electronic reader board on I-5 will not be built and that will be eliminated,'' association board President Adam Day said. "The district will not approve any future hotel for at least five years. The district agrees to increase traffic controls at the Solana Gate. We will also consider relocating the proposed parking structure.''

A traffic signal might be installed at the Solana Gate, the side entrance off Via de la Valle.

Day said the settlement will allow the fairgrounds' operator to move ahead with renovating old exhibit halls and study the facility's impact on neighboring cities.

"The number one, two and three priority projects are the replacement of the old, outdated exhibit halls,'' Day told NBC7/39. "Those halls need updating for building codes, life and safety codes. They need to be more efficient as far as allowing event planners to host events there.''

The parties announced last week that they reached a final agreement to settle the litigation, but did not release details at that time.

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