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SAN DIEGO–The state Coastal Commission last week unanimously approved the city’s plan to tear down walls and remove other structures for a 12-foot widening of the Mission Beach Boardwalk.

Rejecting pleas from angry homeowners, commissioners approved the plan to encroachments built over the years within a 12-foot-wide public right of way east of the boardwalk. The city has threatened legal action on about 200 homeowners unless they remove the structures by Dec. 17.

The city wants to add concrete and landscaping to separate pedestrians from cyclists, skaters and skateboarders.

The 72-year-old boardwalk runs for 2.36 miles from the South Mission Beach jetty to Thomas Avenue in Pacific Beach. Homeowners argue that their property values will suffer and the plan would encourage cyclists and skaters to travel at faster speeds, which actually would make the Boardwalk less safe. They have filed suit in Superior Court challenging the city’s right to reclaim the public right of way. The lawsuit has been scheduled for trial in February 2001.

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