La Jolla Parks & Beaches group drafts improvement projects list for City


La Jolla Parks & Beaches advisory board (LJP&B) at its Dec. 4 meeting at the Rec Center, drafted what’s being called an “impressive expansion” of its annual list of unfunded capital projects for the City to implement.

“Every year, this group sends a capital improvements project list to Department of Park & Rec director Herman Parker asking for the City to prioritize various projects within the scope of our responsibilities,” explained LJP&B chair Ann Dynes. “We’ve been asked to do one again this year.

“So we convened a committee that looked at the old list and good things came off (because they were funded). We also formed a coastal ‘wish list’ group to come up with things that, if the funding could be identified from private donors or otherwise, we could implement.”

With some overlap in the requests from both committees, Dynes presented what she termed “an impressive expansion from previous lists” — more than a dozen items to be categorized as a Capital Improvement Project.

The projects the City agreed to fund include: Coast Boulevard Sidewalk improvements at Children’s Pool (aka Children’s Pool Walk Beautification project), the La Jolla Cove Pavilion (restroom) project, and Coast Walk Trail rehabilitation.

The remaining items (which the board kept on the Capital Improvement Project list) include:

  • Whale View Point Shoreline Enhancement: repair and maintenance of walkway below People’s Wall, studies of stormwater drainage and historicity at People’s Wall, and balance of Whale View Point Master Plan;
Repair and maintenance of the walkway below People’s Wall is on the list of projects La Jolla Parks & Beaches would like the City to fund in 2018.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)
  • Addressing an erosion issue at 6933 Neptune Place;
  • Installing a protective barrier at Children’s Pool where there is a cliff eroding, now marked by a stanchion and caution tape;
  • Restoring and maintaining seawall and retaining walls at Children’s Pool;
  • Repairing the stairs across from 417 Coast;
  • Restoring the entire coastline west of Casa de Manana retirement community;
  • Installing a beach access ramp at Children’s Pool;
  • Fixing the broken street lights along Coast Boulevard.
  • Wish List items, if funding becomes available, include:
  • Widening the Coast Boulevard side of the sidewalk at Scripps Park to six or eight feet;
  • Repairing sunken and cracked sidewalks along Scripps Park;
  • Improving the central picnic area at Scripps Park;
  • Developing an approach to restore the historic Red Roost and Red Rest cottages;
  • Repairing the stair trim across from Casa de Manana
  • Widening the sidewalk opposite 939 Coast Blvd.:
  • Installing bike racks at beach-access points.

There is also a list of 15 immediate maintenance requests the board would submit, such as reseeding the Wedding Bowl, repairing wooden benches, repainting curbs at Children’s Pool that are red but not reserved for emergency parking, repainting projects, and replacing old Hot Coal Receptacles. “We’ve noticed and think the City could easily do these things if we just ask them … these are things they should be doing anyway,” Dynes told the board.

The longstanding effort to have a beach-access ramp installed at Children’s Pool, which included a failed lawsuit filed in 2013, was taken off the list because as Dynes explained, it was “unviable,” but after some discussion, the ramp went back on.

LJP&B trustee Melinda Merryweather argued: “For this to have been taken off after all the work we’ve done for all these years is absolutely shocking to me. It’s really hard to carry someone down those stairs in a wheelchair; it’s almost impossible. It’s terribly important this accessway be restored.”

Diver John Leek spoke on behalf of Friends of Children’s Pool president Ken Hunrichs, who also supports the ramp. Leek read from a list of reasons why it would behoove the City to add one: “A restored ramp allows an alternative beach access to the crumbling stairs during stairway repairs. Repairs to the sidewalk and stairs can be done without an emergency coastal permit and visitors can simply use the ramp for access. People with toddlers will be able to reach the beach with their strollers; currently, they have to leave the strollers on the sidewalk and carry small children and all their gear down the stairs.”

Convinced, the board voted — with two opposed — to add the ramp proposal to its list of Capital Improvement Projects for the City.

In other LJP&B news:

Two project updates: City reports on the Children’s Pool Walk Beautification project and La Jolla Cove Pavilion project will be given at future meetings.

A presentation on the La Jolla Cove Pavilion project, which would replace the restroom facility at Scripps Park, is scheduled for 4 p.m. Monday, Jan. 22 at the Rec Center, 615 Prospect St. Organizer Judy Adams Halter said at that time, architects and the City will present their final plans and provide material examples.

A date has not been set for the Children’s Pool Walk Beautification project presentation, but organizer Phyllis Minick said she expects it soon.

The project has been in the works for eight years, and would improve the pedestrian flow and aesthetics of the viewing area above Children’s Pool, and ideally, provide better seating options. After residents and private organizations raised $250,000 for the work, the City agreed to fund the rest and implement the project. The City is ready to present “final” renderings and timelines.

Half Marathon: The board unanimously voted to support the Kiwanis Club of La Jolla’s 37th annual La Jolla Half Marathon, slated for April 22. “There were some detours in past years due to construction in La Jolla Shores, but we are back to the original course,” said applicant Leisha Lamp. “The only change is we are starting earlier, at 7 a.m., so we will end sooner.”

Officers elected: A nominating committee formed to recommend a new vice-president and treasurer (the remaining two positions are elected in alternating years).

Bill Robbins was nominated for vice-president and John Shannon for treasurer. The slate was approved unanimously.

— La Jolla Parks & Beaches next meets 4 p.m. Monday, Jan. 22 at La Jolla Rec Center, 615 Prospect St.