Bocce court in progress at the La Jolla Recreation Center

Construction has begun on a temporary bocce court at the La Jolla Recreation Center.
(Elisabeth Frausto)

Construction has begun on a long-awaited temporary bocce court on the La Jolla Recreation Center grounds and is expected to be completed in the coming weeks.

The court, placed along the Draper Avenue sidewalk near the intersection of Prospect Street, has been graded and construction workers are “making good headway on it,” said La Jolla Community Recreation Group Chairwoman Mary Coakley Munk at the group’s May 26 meeting.

The CRG, the Rec Center’s advisory board, has pursued the bocce court since 2017, with San Diego city officials approving a right-of-entry permit to allow non-city employees to build the court on city land in April.

Steve Hadley, representing the office of City Councilman Joe LaCava, whose District 1 includes La Jolla, said construction of the bocce court is “moving along. We’re happy that you were able to get that paperwork through the city attorney’s office.”

The projected cost of the bocce court is $23,000, Coakley Munk told the La Jolla Light, double the cost estimated in 2019. She said the increase is the result of a “tremendous” rise in materials and labor costs.

The bocce court construction is funded by the nonprofit Friends of the La Jolla Recreation Center.

Tom Grunow and Bill Anderson of Grunow Construction are overseeing the court’s plans and construction, along with Jose Perez of J.J. Perez Landscape, Inc. and Robert Casias of Casias Construction, Coakley Munk said. Each company is also donating a portion of its labor.

If the court proves popular, a more permanent one will be incorporated in the planned Rec Center renovation. “I hope everyone will get out there and enjoy it,” Coakley Munk said.

Other CRG news

Reopening: The Rec Center does not yet have a reopening date for its building and equipment check-out, said Rec Center Director Jesse DeLille. He told the Light he expects the San Diego Parks & Recreation Department to announce a reopening date soon. The Rec Center playgrounds, basketball and pickleball courts, and other outdoor areas, remain open for public use.

Restrooms: Responding to a board member question about restroom availability, DeLille said the Rec Center restrooms are open “most days” from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sundays 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

He said the hours may vary depending on staff scheduling. “We’re trying to be consistent … [but] we don’t have regular hours of operation right now, and only two staff members.”

DeLille also said there are portable toilets in front of the Rec Center on Prospect Street.

A broken bridge on the Rec Center's playground for smaller children has been removed.
A broken bridge on the Rec Center’s playground for smaller children has been removed.
(Elisabeth Frausto)

Playground update: The bridge features of a play structure for small children have been removed by the Parks & Recreation Department support services, DeLille said. The broken bridges were blocked off by Rec Center staff two years ago due to safety concerns.

As workers removed one of the bridges, “they realized the other [bridge] on that structure needed to go as well,” DeLille said, and removed it the same day.

The play structure now stands as “different stations now,” he said, unconnected but “it opens up more sand play area at least.”

He told the Light there are “no immediate plans to replace the equipment,” as the playground will undergo a complete overhaul in the planned Rec Center renovation.

The La Jolla Community Recreation Group next meets at 5 p.m. Wednesday, June 23. For more information, call (858) 552-1658. ◆