BOBBI HIGUERA contemplated the crumbling white limestone walls of the long-vacant Rockaway quarry as if trying to picture something beyond her grasp. "I just don't see them building a hotel back here," she said.

As improbable as it may seem to the Pacifica residents who visit the former quarry every day with their dogs, bicycles and baby carriages, this open vista of rocks and wild scrub likely will be filled someday with not just a hotel, but shops and apartments as well.

Pacifica residents narrowly rejected such a vision for the quarry last year, as proposed by Florida-based owner and developer Donahue Peebles, when they defeated Measure L, a local ballot measure that would have given Peebles the legal right to build up to 355 housing units in the 86-acre quarry, as well as a 350-room luxury hotel.

But the ballot measure failed by only 509 votes, and Peebles never gave up on building a walkable "town center" — a place filled with green space next to retail, restaurants and other amenities. He spoke of the need for a meeting place for locals unlike anything available in Pacifica.

The Peebles Corp. still is crafting its second development proposal and has shared preliminary design ideas with the city manager and members ofthe city's Planning Department staff, which has offered some advice, according to Daniel Grimm, senior vice president with Peebles Corp.