La Jolla News Nuggets: ‘Spaces as Places’ hearing; Bird Rock wreath contest; RSVP team; UCSD ranking; more

Puesto in La Jolla
Businesses that use public property for outdoor dining, like Puesto in La Jolla, must apply for a permit under San Diego’s “Spaces as Places” program.
(Elisabeth Frausto)

‘Spaces as Places’ gets December hearing at Coastal Commission

After months of waiting, the city of San Diego’s “Spaces as Places” program will get a hearing by the California Coastal Commission that could allow it to take effect in the coastal zone, which includes most of La Jolla.

The commission is slated to take up the matter during its next meeting, Dec. 14-16 in Long Beach and online.

The Spaces as Places initiative, which went into effect in most of the city in mid-July, establishes regulations for eating and drinking areas placed on parking spaces on city streets and other outdoor public places and provides a process for existing temporary operations to transition to permanent. Businesses must comply with the new regulations to be granted a permit under Spaces as Places.

However, the program can’t take effect in coastal areas until it is reviewed and certified by the Coastal Commission. The review is necessary because the ordinance requires a change to Local Coastal Programs, which serve as planning documents for coastal communities.

Bird Rock merchants launch wreath-decorating contest

Merchants along La Jolla Boulevard in Bird Rock have launched a friendly wreath-decorating contest leading up to the Dec. 10 BirdStock Music Festival & Holiday Market.

About 30 businesses are creating a holiday wreath to hang in their establishment that best reflects or represents their business. Each wreath has a QR code that community members can use to vote for their favorite. The winner for Best Wreath will be announced at the BirdStock event, which will take place along La Jolla Boulevard.

BirdStock will feature musicians, vendor booths and more, with proceeds going to the Bird Rock Foundation, which supports Bird Rock Elementary School.

SDPD Northern Division seeking senior volunteers

The San Diego Police Department’s Northern Division is seeking additional members for its Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) to serve La Jolla, University City, Pacific Beach, Mission Beach, Mission Bay, Bay Park, Bay Ho, east and west Clairemont, Torrey Pines and the UTC area.

RSVP volunteers help the SDPD with neighborhood patrols and use police radios when necessary to report to the department. They also assist sworn uniformed officers with diverting traffic at accident, crime and fire scenes and support disaster preparedness and homeland security efforts. RSVP team members are authorized to issue citations for vehicles violating parking regulations in disabled spaces and red zones.

RSVP volunteers also visit senior residents as part of the “You Are Not Alone” program to check on their safety and welfare and can be tasked with performing daily home security checks for residents who are away on vacation.

Volunteers must be at least age 50, possess a valid California driver’s license, commit to three days per month of service (in addition to a short training day) and pass a background check.

If interested, contact the Northern Division office at (858) 552-1737 and leave a message including your name and telephone number.

UC San Diego rises to No. 29 in world reputation rankings

UC San Diego in La Jolla has been named No. 29 in the world among universities, climbing five spots in the Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings for 2022.

UCSD also rose four places to No. 17 in the United States and ranked No. 5 among public colleges in the country, up one spot from last year.

The Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings are based on the world’s largest invitation-only opinion survey of senior published academics. The scholars are asked to name no more than 15 universities that they believe are the best for research and teaching in their field.

A total of 200 schools were evaluated in the final list from Times Higher Education.

In October, UCSD was named No. 15 in the United States and No. 20 in the world in U.S. News & World Report’s 2022-23 Best Global Universities report. In September, the school was named the eighth-best public university in the nation in the U.S. News & World Report 2022 Best Colleges ranking.

La Jolla Institute for Immunology welcomes four new board members

The La Jolla Institute for Immunology has four new members of its board of directors: former U.S. Rep. Susan Davis, philanthropist and research advocate Barbara Donnell, cellular and molecular biologist Sandra Schmid and immunologist and science policy expert Linda Sherman.

Davis served as the representative for California’s 53rd Congressional District for 10 terms from 2001 to 2021. She holds a master’s degree in social work and has been a supporter of health equity and patients’ rights.

Donnell is an advocate for Type 1 diabetes patients who work includes coordination of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and LJI “Meet the Scientists Day” for T1D patients and their families.

Schmid has worked to uncover the molecular mechanisms and regulation of clathrin-mediated endocytosis, a process in cells that controls nutrient uptake. Her honors include a National Institutes of Health MERIT Award, the William C. Rose Award from the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and election to the American Academy of Arts of Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. In 2020, Schmid became the inaugural chief scientific officer of the Chan Zuckerberg Biohub, a nonprofit research organization.

Sherman is a former president of the American Academy of Immunology and a professor emeritus at Scripps Research in La Jolla, where her laboratory shed light on how T cells respond to threats such as tumor cells. Sherman also has served as a member of several NIH committees and national advisory councils designed to review grant applications and write policy on federal funding priorities. She also was involved in the early growth and direction of San Diego charitable organization Kids Included Together, which provides opportunities for children with developmental disabilities in child care, after-school and recreational programs.

— Compiled by La Jolla Light staff