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Bird Rock council is introduced to Vision Bird Rock

Vision Bird Rock looks to create a plan for "a vibrant and welcoming street scene and neighborhood" along La Jolla Boulevard and surrounding streets.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

Looking to shape the future of Bird Rock as a community hub and commercial district, an effort known as Vision Bird Rock has spent the past two months forming its mission, gathering input and establishing goals under the auspices of the Bird Rock Community Council.

The BRCC was introduced to Vision Bird Rock (previously known as the Bird Rock visioning exercise) at its digital meeting May 6.

Headed by resident Sharon Wampler, a committee currently with seven members has been meeting weekly since March 16 to address issues such as gathering spaces, walkability, a more viable commercial district and what Bird Rock could look like in coming years. Architect Trace Wilson, who also was involved in the multiyear visioning process at the La Jolla Recreation Center, is also on the committee.

“We’re at the beginning and we hope to address all the issues that [this board has] talked about,” Wampler said.

Wampler said the group’s mission statement is to “create and drive implementation of a plan for our community’s future by working together with residents, merchants, building owners and schools to build a vibrant and welcoming street scene and neighborhood. We are going to work on engaging [business and property] owners, developers, merchants and all community stakeholders in reimagining the La Jolla Boulevard shopping district as a beautiful and lively hub for communal and business activities.”

“The community stakeholders include building owners, developers, BRCC members, merchants, parents, arts advocates and a teen group that has brainstormed on what they would love to see,” she added. “Teenagers don’t have a lot of places to hang out in Bird Rock now and in their future.

“There are also landscape architects, engineers, those [who] can offer historical input, people with disabilities and retirees.”

Once the group has more refined goals and tasks, it will hold a meeting of stakeholders, details of which are forthcoming. A Vision Bird Rock representative also will speak at future BRCC meetings.

Other BRCC news

Overlooks overflowing: Now that local beaches and some parks are open, the Bird Rock Coastal Overlooks Committee — led by residents Don Schmidt and Mary Lynn Hyde — has observed an increase in trash at overlooks.

Bird Rock residents have taken to adding trash cans to overlooks for use when city trash cans overflow.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

“We have a huge problem with takeout containers at our overlooks,” Hyde said. “We have good neighbors that have been emptying some of the trash cans that are overflowing, and one person even got an extra trash can and put it there with a note telling people to throw their trash away there.”

Another overlook issue is erosion at La Jolla Hermosa Park, Schmidt said.

“There has been serious erosion due to rains, and from what I understand, the park underwent repairs in 2013, but that was seven years ago. We know there is a budget crunch, but we want this on the city’s radar and city engineers can take a look because it is going to be a safety issue. It is not going to get any better. Hopefully we can find a long-term solution.”

City update: Steve Hadley, representing the office of City Council President Pro Tem Barbara Bry, provided an update on how city staff members’ duties have been rearranged as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. He asked for patience when departments are slow.

“City staff has been reassigned to a multitude of jobs. You see parking enforcement officers guarding beach parking lots, librarians closing down libraries … park and rec staff helping set up the Golden Hall and later the convention center for homeless shelters,” he said. “A lot of those people are going to come back to their assigned positions that they regularly have, but they are going to be picking up a mountain of work that piled up while they were gone. We have this backlog that is going to take us a month or so to work out.”

Next meeting: The BRCC’s next meeting will be at 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 2, either at the Bird Rock Elementary School auditorium or via Zoom. Details will be posted as soon as they are available at birdrockcc.org.