San Diego

City Council Approves Controversial Legacy International Center Project

The $160 million Legacy International Center would be built at the Mission Valley Resort site

The San Diego City Council has approved a controversial religious retreat planned for Mission Valley. 

The $160 million Legacy International Center, set to be built at the Mission Valley Resort site, passed 7 to 2 Tuesday. 

The Legacy International Center plans to feature replicas of Roman catacombs and Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall on the 18-acre lot, according to the developer’s website. The hotel on site will have 127 rooms. 

Televangelist Morris Cerullo describes the site as a tourist attraction in an online promotional video, saying the idea for it came to him from Jesus in a dream.

The location is near the Interstate 8 freeway in Mission Valley, just down the hill from Hillcrest and UCSD Medical Center.

Last month, the City Council delayed a decision on the project because of traffic concerns in Hotel Circle. 

The project has faced opposition from San Diego's LGBTQ community, too.

Some have expressed concern over Cerullo’s belief in trying to turn gay people straight.

“Thinking you can be changed from your orientation, it’s really a step backwards in where we are as a community. It really has no place in San Diego,” said Will Rodriguez-Kennedy, the president of the San Diego Democrats for Equality club.

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