The Dana Point Boaters Association is the champion of recreational boating and the jewel that is
Dana Point Harbor.

March 11, 2024


Hello Dana Point Boater,

The two words, “public access”, while seemingly self-explanatory, are actually two very powerful words when used in the context of the Coastal Act. In fact, the Dana Point Local Coastal Plan, (LCP) approved by both the City of Dana Point and the CA Coastal Commission, mentions these two words 105 times. Click here for a copy.

 This newsletter addresses concerns that public access is currently being denied to day use boaters in Dana Point Harbor.

Quoting the LCP: “Boat Launch Ramp Parking: The required redesign and expansion of the existing five and seven-tenths (5.7) acre boat launch facility shall maximize the number of vehicle-with-trailer parking spaces meeting minimum Department of Boating and Waterways guidelines (10 x 40 feet). At a minimum, the existing three hundred and thirty-four (334) vehicle-with-trailer parking spaces shall be maintained. However, both larger and smaller vehicle-with-trailer parking spaces shall also be provided in adequate amount to meet demand as determined through the Coastal Development Permit process.”

Why are 10 x 40 feet parking spaces the minimum requirement? Day use boaters trailer their boats to the harbor to launch for day use boating. Most use a pickup truck 16 to 18 feet long pulling a boat trailer 24 to 28 feet making the length overall 40 to 46 feet. Per the CA Division of Boating and Waterways (DBW), “Pull-through vehicle/trailer parking spaces are strongly recommended and should be utilized to the maximum extent possible. Pull-through parking spaces eliminate backing, a problem for many boaters who are not proficient in backing their vehicles with a trailer attached, especially when parking areas are busy. Driveway widths need to be a minimum of 20’ for one-way driveways, and 24’ for two-way driveways.” When you consider the turning radius and swing clearance needed to successfully maneuver a truck pulling a boat trailer, you can understand why the DBW recommends minimum requirements.

To quote the LCP section 6.2.4-13: “Prior to the approval of any Coastal Development Permit or Grading Permit for Revitalization Plan improvements, OC Dana Point Harbor shall prepare a construction-phase Parking Management Plan (PMP) that ensures public access will be retained to the extent it can be safely provided and to reduce construction congestion/ conflicts.”

Also quoting the LCP: “Construction Access: Access to the Marine Services Commercial (where day use boater parking is located) and designated boater parking areas shall be maintained during all construction phases to the greatest extent feasible. A Construction Management Plan shall be prepared identifying the configuration of construction staging areas, temporary access routes and parking areas and shall be submitted with Coastal Development Permit (CDP) application(s) in accordance with the requirements of Chapter II 14, Off-Street Parking Standards and Requirements. Any subsequent changes to the approved Construction Management Plan shall also be consistent with this regulation and shall be incorporated into all applicable construction plans submitted for review and approval prior to issuance of Grading and/or Building Permits by the County of Orange.”

Two reminders. First, the LCP is enforced by the City of Dana Point, and they also enforce the Coastal Development Permit 13-0018 for the commercial core. At any time, if DPHP is not in compliance with the LCP or CDP, the City of Dana Point could issue a stop notice until DPHP complies. Compare this to the average Dana Point citizen doing a home remodel or home addition, the homeowner must comply with the permits or get shut down. Secondly, DPHP has started construction on the parking structure.

On February 23, 2024, DPHP recently requested a modification to the Parking Management Plan (PMP). Click here for a copy. To our knowledge this has not yet been approved by the City of Dana Point, nor the Director of Community Development.

The modification to the PMP states it includes 334-day use boater parking spaces in two separate lots. One with 130 parking spaces, and one with 204 parking spaces. Let’s highlight some of the problems with the information on Exhibit B attached to the request for modification.

  • Neither parking area shows the actual layout for the 10 x 40 minimum spaces needed. The parking spaces shown are from old, previous parking lot drawings. How many 10 x 40 spaces could fit in this area with the correct driveway sizes? We challenge you to get 334, 10 x 40 parking spaces in these two combined areas.
  • Part of this area marked for 204-day use boater parking is being used by Bellingham’s crane to unload and launch the new dock sections being delivered. The path the crane uses goes right through a section of the day use boater parking.
  • In this same area part of the asphalt has been torn up by Bellingham’s crane movement which would make it unusable for day use boater parking. Click here for a picture.
  • While there is an asterisk at the bottom of Exhibit B which states striping configuration is approximate & may be subject to change, we can’t find an area on the map with an asterisk to reference what location this comment references. If this Exhibit is to be used by the City of Dana Point to approve the plan, shouldn’t it be accurate? Again, let’s reference the common Dana Point citizen building a home addition. Would these plans be acceptable?

Writing this newsletter was exhausting, but the information relayed is important. The City of Dana Point and the Director of Community Development have the obligation to ensure that DPHP comply with both the LCP and CDP. Please let them both know you are watching and will hold them accountable for proper oversight.

Thank you to those boaters and friends who recently contributed to the ongoing costs and fees of Class Action litigation pending before the California Court of Appeals. Boaters’ counsels believe the appeal has great merit. The litigation needs all boaters’ continuing support. If you have not contributed before, please consider a contribution now. If you contributed in the past, please contribute again if you can. Remember, the Class Action Lawsuit is all about public access being denied to boaters!



Dana Point Boaters Association thanks you for your help and dedication to improving our home port marina experience. Feel free to fly your I'm All In Flag (special class legal fund donation.)

In the meantime, please continue to submit your comments on slip rate increases and other subjects by Click Here.

Legal Endeavors are Expensive

Lastly, legal endeavors are expensive, and we appreciate all who have donated to our legal fund.

Please consider doing so today. If you haven't donated, consider an ongoing monthly donation by clicking the box "Make this a monthly donation," click here. These legal costs keep mounting as we continue moving forward with the Class Action Lawsuit. Your information will always remain private. Or, donation by mail by clicking on the image to the right.

All donations are private and your identity will never be shared

Your Dana Point Boaters Association Directors, Advisors, and Advocacy Members Thanks You For Your Support!

From: Anne Eubanks, President | (949) 485-5656 | Email Us! | #DPBA Website

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