Our Issues

We amplify and accelerate our partners’ work and catalyze action through three pathways to address the most persistent challenges facing the San Diego region:

Community Initiated. We are creating a platform for San Diegans to provide insight and expertise on how to solve community issues.

Partner Initiated. We collaborate with organizations to advance each other’s shared goals and objectives—each shaped by a community-informed perspective.

BCCA Initiated. We’re taking the long view. What is the future of our binational region, twenty, thirty, or more years into our future? What do we need to be a thriving global city?

Early Priorities

Balboa Park

Balboa Park is falling behind. This regional gem has an estimated $300-500 million in deferred maintenance, with no plan to fund or fix it. In the coming years, up to $1 billion may be needed if we truly want a world-class Balboa Park. BCCA convened Balboa Park stakeholders, conducted a national scan of governance and finance structures of other major parks in the country, and developed a set of recommendations for public consideration. We do not endorse any one specific recommendation, but our hope is to elicit public discourse that will lead to solutions to ensure the park remains among our region’s greatest cultural and natural assets.

The recommendations in the report are:

  • A revenue measure for deferred maintenance either by the City of San Diego, the County of San Diego, or a Joint Powers Authority.
  • A commitment by the City of San Diego to dedicate a certain portion of Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) revenue to Balboa Park maintenance and infrastructure annually.  
  • A commitment by a lead organization and other nonprofit organizations within the park to raise significant funds annually for ongoing park maintenance.  
  • A Property and Business Improvement District (PBID) for the Balboa Park area to focus on issues associated with park adjacency.  
  • Additional commercial activity in and near the park, generating additional revenue for park maintenance and upgrades without compromising the quality of the visitor experience.  
  • Creation of a Balboa Park stakeholder oversight committee.  
  • Creation of a separate cabinet-level city department for Balboa Park.

A copy of the full report can be downloaded  

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Cross-Border Region

The border holds immense significance for the San Diego region, serving as both a physical and cultural bridge with Mexico. It's a dynamic boundary where people, ideas, and commerce flow, shaping the region's identity and economy. The relationship with Mexico fosters a rich tapestry of cultural exchange, trade partnerships, and familial connections that contribute to the vibrancy and diversity of our communities.

In partnership with the Institute for the Americas, we explored nearshoring opportunities in the cross-border region in 2024. This collaboration resulted in the publication of the "Seizing CaliBaja Nearshoring Opportunities" report, accompanied by a set of interactive maps. The interactive maps currently depict existing entities in multiple sectors such as biotech, pharmaceutical, aerospace and medical devices in San Diego and Tijuana, representing our region’s talent, innovation and collaboration.

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World Design Capital

The San Diego Tijuana region is currently buzzing with excitement as we proudly hold the title of World Design Capital 2024 and come together to celebrate our incredible cross-border community. BCCA is proud to be one of the five organizing partners for World Design Capital 2024 alongside Design Forward Alliance, UC San Diego Design Lab, City of San Diego and the City of Tijuana.

The WDC 2024 program invites everyone, from local designers and innovators to civic leaders and community members, to celebrate the San Diego Tijuana region. The year-long celebration is a platform to showcase our collective design achievements, foster connections through design, and inspire collaborative action to tackle our community’s challenges.

We invite you to check out these great moments from our WDC 2024 journey thus far:

  • May 2023: San Diego and Tijuana, alongside the region’s design community, government leaders, and organizing partners, celebrate their WDC Signing Ceremony to mark the start of the year-long celebration to highlight our innovative cross-border region. Read more here.
  • January 2024: In a historic first-ever collaboration, musicians from the San Diego Youth Symphony and the Sinfónica Juvenil de Tijuana came together to celebrate youth and the transformative ability of music. You can watch their breathtaking performance here: San Diego Youth Symphony and Sinfónica Juvenil de Tijuana Collaboration. They will perform at key events throughout 2024.
  • May 2024: Tijuana buzzed with creative energy as it hosted over 100 events, showcasing the talents of over 300 designers across 40 venues throughout the city. The Tijuana Design Week honored the transformative power of design and celebrated design’s capacity to foster community, enhance quality of life, and ignite fresh perspectives.

Make sure to mark your calendars for these signature events of 2024:

  • WORLD DESIGN EXPERIENCE POWERED BY DESIGN FORWARD ALLIANCE-SD DESIGN WEEK: San Diego, California | Wed, 18 Sep 2024 - Wed, 25 Sep 2024. Embark on a seven-day journey celebrating design across the San Diego-Tijuana region, featuring a rich tapestry of community-led programs.
  • WORLD DESIGN POLICY CONFERENCE POWERED BY UC SAN DIEGO DESIGN LAB & CITY OF SAN DIEGO: San Diego, California | Tue, 12 Nov 2024 - Wed, 13 Nov 2024. Join Beyond Boundaries, a two-day conference offering a global platform for exchanging insights and best practices in design-led urban policies.
  • WORLD DESIGN NETWORK OF CITIES MEETING: Tijuana, Mexico | Fri, 15 Nov 2024. Engage in the dialogue at the World Design Network of Cities Meeting, fostering collaboration among public administrators and design leaders from WDC-designated cities.
  • WORLD DESIGN CONVOCATION CEREMONY: San Diego, California | Sat, 16 Nov 2024. Witness the symbolic handover of the WDC designation from WDC San Diego Tijuana 2024 to WDC Frankfurt Rheinmain 2026, commemorating the culmination of our remarkable journey.

To learn more about these events, World Design Capital 2024, and how you can be part of this transformative experience, we invite you to visit  wdc2024.org

Opportunity and Prosperity

Almost 30% of San Diego’s children live in economic distress, and the prosperity gap within the region is obvious and unacceptable. Let’s talk about how we can do better, and then act to improve the lives of all our fellow San Diegans—regardless of geography, race, or ethnicity.

The COVID-19 pandemic has already caused the loss of more than 100,000 jobs in San Diego County, nearly half of which come from the leisure and hospitality sector . Too many families and individuals have exhausted their savings and are on the brink of disaster.

Our regional economy needs to look different now. With our partners, we’ll help organize to inspire employers and training institutions to focus on high growth, high wage industries in San Diego and create incubators to support entrepreneurs and innovators.

Housing Affordability

San Diego’s housing market has never felt so out of control. The median price of a home in San Diego County is twice the national average. More than half of renters in San Diego County are considered over-burdened by their housing costs, spending more than 30% of their income on housing. When housing costs are high, our workforce suffers, people have less money to spend on other necessities. It’s time to bring housing advocates, developers, and city planners together with those impacted by this crisis. Let’s listen to each other and develop common sense guidelines to ensure every San Diegan can actually live in San Diego.

Envisioning Our Future

We need not just a vision, but a plan for our regional future. What does it look like for our residents, industries, nonprofit sector, and government? Who do we want to be in ten or twenty years? How do we build the best San Diego region going forward?

The San Diego/Tijuana border is the busiest binational region in the world. People, goods, and ideas crisscross the border every day, connecting us—culturally, economically, and otherwise. We are one community in many ways. Embracing this robust binational relationship is critical for San Diego to be a global city in the 21st century.

Rebuilding Community

All across our nation, we have become a polarized people —losing community connections across ideologies, ethnicities, and even within neighborhoods. We will seek to organize a local coalition of those committed to rebuilding a sense of community that can heal and take our region forward, together.