The San Diego region’s borders have traditionally been thought of as limited to the jurisdictional boundaries of San Diego County. However, over the years, our perceived borders have expanded. San Diego County has increasingly close ties to its neighboring counties (Imperial County, Orange County, and Riverside County), the Republic of Mexico, and the 18 tribal governments - which are sovereign nations - within our region.

With the increasing importance of interregional and international commuting, goods movement, and linked industries, the San Diego - Northern Baja California region is not only an increasingly important and interdependent trade, manufacturing, and commuting corridor, it also has great potential to enhance its global competitive advantage. Growth in the region increases the demand for local and imported resources, such as water and energy.

Additionally, goods movement, industry, and other cross-border activities that support the local border economies create a need for more infrastructure, such as housing and roadways, and places increasing pressure upon the natural environment. How we plan to meet these demands will affect those around us, and vice-versa. San Diego Forward: The Regional Plan will address these issues, as well as help alleviate potential conflicts, promote collaborative solutions, and protect the overall quality of life in our interregional and binational area.

An important goal of the 2021 Regional Plan is to create a regional community where San Diego, our neighboring counties, tribal governments, and northern Baja California mutually benefit from our varied resources and international location. Specifically, the Regional Plan seeks to pursue fair and equitable planning with consideration of interregional impacts. It also seeks to promote shared infrastructure, efficient transportation systems, integrated environmental planning, and economic development with our neighboring counties, tribal governments, and Mexico.