La Jolla’s Casa stairway repairs set to start May 16By Kathy Day
Work will begin May 16 to reconstruct the stairs to South Casa Beach.
Joe Castillo, public works superintendent for the city, said last week that crews will have do much of the work by hand and 5-gallon buckets because of limited access to the concrete stairway leading to the beach just south of the Children’s Pool.
The stairs have been closed since mid-December when city officials deemed them unsafe. Last month La Jolla’s Parks and Beaches Inc. board agreed to keep the pressure on the city to get repairs done before summer.
News of stair repairs was welcomed by Patrick Ahern, interim chair of La Jolla Parks and Beaches, who noted the committee found it “unacceptable” Casa stairs had been proposed to be closed all summer.
“We presented them with a temporary fix similar to what we did at WindanSea using wooden stairs and other methods to get the stairs through the summer, and to their (city’s) credit, they responded quickly looking at multiple approaches and coming up with a relative long-term solution,” Ahern said.
With the seal pupping season ending on May 15, a crew of about a dozen workers will begin the next day, jack-hammering out the broken stairs and carrying buckets of concrete up to the staging area on Coast Boulevard.
They plan to cut holes where they can and backfill the steps with slurry and concrete to stabilize them, Castillo said, adding that work may be intermittent because of tides.
“We’re at Mother Nature’s mercy,” he noted, pointing out that high tides wash water up onto the stairs.
Workers will use the lifeguard parking area during the workday so the public may be inconvenienced for the two weeks of the project. Castillo said they plan to complete the work by the time the annual construction moratorium goes into effect just before Memorial Day weekend.
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