La Jolla Merchants Association seeks new office space

LJVMA President Phil Coller (center) and fellow trustees discuss commerce and Village beautification projects in the Village during a recent meeting.
LJVMA President Phil Coller (center) and fellow trustees discuss commerce and Village beautification projects in the Village during a recent meeting.
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Herringbone restaurant planted three magnolia trees in front of its space at 7837 Herschel Ave. recently, as part of a tree restoration project. Pat Sherman

The La Jolla Village Merchants Association (LJVMA) is looking for a more prominent location in the Village, which it hopes to occupy when its lease at 7734 Her- schel Ave. expires Jan. 1.

Plans are for the new space to also house the La Jolla Visitor Information Center, which is operated by the San Diego Convention and Visitors Bureau (ConVis) and currently located at 7966 Herschel Ave., near Prospect Street.

The LJVMA hopes the shared space will boost the visibility of the merchants association and visitors cen- ter, the latter of which needs additional room.

“We could stay where we are, but we want to take this opportunity,” said LJVMA President Phil Coller, noting some limitations of the cur- rent lease. “If anybody’s got ideas on new property we’d love to (hear about them).”

Coller said the merchants association has applied for grants to assume manage- ment of the volunteer-run visitors center, while ex- panding aspects of its part- nership with ConVis, which seeks to have a greater im- pact and presence in La Jolla.

In Other LJVMA News

Activating Associate Memberships:

During its June 13 meeting at the Cuvier Club, the board voted to offer associate memberships to businesses and organizations located outside its Business Improvement District (BID). Businesses located within the BID area are automatically granted mem- bership via a city-mandated BID assessment.

Associate memberships would be granted to businesses located within the confines of the La Jolla Community Plan map, which the city last updated in 2004.

Associate members will receive the same benefits and voting rights as existing members, though they cannot sit as directors per LJVMA bylaws.

The rate for associate memberships is $350 for businesses with 1-10 employees, $600 for businesses with 11-40 employees, and up. The highest associate membership is $2,000 for businesses with 200 or more employees.

The average annual rate for assessed members within the BID is about $350.

Associate memberships will be granted on a case-by-case basis by the LJVMA board, Coller said, noting that the board could waive or reduce fees for nonprofit organizations.

“The business improve- ment district leaves out some very important businesses that are outside of the membership area,” Coller said. “We want to give those businesses opportunities to

become members. ... We think it will really bind the community together.”

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LJVMA President Phil Coller (center) and fellow trustees discuss commerce and Village beautification projects in the Village during a recent meeting.

Haute La Jolla Nights Recap:

Though the first Haute La Jolla Nights event only drew a couple hundred people to the Village on Saturday, June 9, the LJVMA deemed the event an overall success.

Village merchants and galleries kept their doors open to 9 p.m. or later, offering specials, food and wine or activities, while bands and musicians performed throughout the Village.

Event organizer Julie Matibag said she would seek sponsorships with signage for each live mu- sic space in the future. The next Haute Nights event will be 6-9 p.m. July 21.

Tree Trimming Troubles:

Board member Egon Kafka reported three magnolia trees were recently planted in front of Herringbone restaurant, and three flowering Cassia trees were planted in front of Warwick’s Bookstore to replace several small palms.

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