By Dave Schwab
Architects laid out preliminary plans for residential redevelopment of the historic Green Dragon site that requires a city special use permit during Monday's La Jolla Planned District Ordinance Committee meeting.
La Jolla architect Jim Alcorn of Alcorn & Benton Architects presented the developer’s plans to redevelop the nearly one-acre former Green Dragon site.
“This location right now doesn’t have anything on it, but it used to be the site of four little cottages removed in 1991, and is near the heritage house which was turned into Brockton Villa restaurant,” said Alcorn speaking for Allison-Zongker.
Alcorn said a 1995 site development proposal calling for four residential units on the former Green Dragon site has been scaled back to three. He noted a problem remains to be resolved with zoning, which currently doesn’t allow ground-floor residential.
“So we’re going to go back to the city with a modified request for a special use permit to support our having residential, but no commercial, development on Coast Boulevard,” he said.
After the meeting, Alcorn’s business partner, Paul Benton, said the proposed residences would be townhouse-type units with underground garages.
“We’re going to three units with a little more open space around them,” said Benton. “The community really does not want commercial space on Coast Boulevard but thinks commercial is great on Prospect Street.”
Benton noted Green Dragon redevelopment would be directly below the old Chart House site (now being converted into an Eddie V’s restaurant that is set to open later this year).
“The project would have at least two stories above decks and balconies overlooking the Cove and still be in keeping with the character of the area,” he said.
The committee could not take action because of a lack of a quorum after committee member Goldfish Point Cafe owner Deborah Marengo noted she had a conflict of interest because her landlord is the project's developer.
The advisory group also heard a presentation from former First District City Councilman Scott Peters on behalf of the La Jolla Community Foundation, a nonprofit promoting community enhancement, defending an ongoing public art program in the Village.
Peters’ presentation came in answer to previous concerns raised by PDO Committee members who said they weren't properly notified about the foundation's mural projects on private property and that the ongoing art projects might not conform with PDO design requirements.
“The idea is to do eight to 10 of these world-class art projects, all privately funded,” said Peters, noting two are already done and a third, a photographic blow-up of a grain of sand on a wall near the new Rubio’s restaurant on Fay Avenue, is in the works.
Chairwoman Ione Stiegler noted signage requirements in La Jolla’s design ordinace do not cover public art, therefore the Foundation’s projects are in conformance. But she noted Foundation project’s color palettes, and the materials used, may not conform with the rules.
Members asked Peters to return at a later meeting with more details about the particulars of colors and materials to be used in future Foundation public art projects.