La Jolla Parks & Beaches board submits permit application for coastal fence repairs

Some residents say the fences along Scripps Park in La Jolla are losing their stability and could pose a safety hazard.
(Claire Sheinberg)

A working group created to facilitate repairs for fencing along Coast Boulevard in La Jolla has submitted a draft permit application to the city of San Diego.

“Most recently, our working group met to discuss ideas and plans for the right-of-entry permit” to do the work, La Jolla Parks & Beaches President Bob Evans said at the board’s Jan. 23 meeting. He credited LJP&B Vice President Brenda Fake with helping with the permit application, given her work as president of Friends of Coast Walk Trail, which received similar permits to make repairs to the trail.

“The general scope we are thinking covers multiple [sections of] fencing, starting at Goldfish Point and the Cave Store all the way along Coast Boulevard to Whale View Point,” Evans said. “The fencing we are looking at includes the white wooden fences but also areas of wood post-and-chain and metal post-and-rope, so work includes refurbishing and repairing some of the post-and-chain and upgrading them where needed.”

No new fences would be added and no sections of post-and-rope or post-and-chain would change to something else, though they may be replaced or repaired as needed, he said.

Along with the work on the fences, the permit application addresses bluff erosion control and maintenance, plus improvement of what Evans calls “coast-scapes” or “side-scapes,” which are sections of dirt next to sitting walls in which native vegetation could be planted to improve aesthetics and help reduce litter.

“We’re asking for a lot, and we’ll see what the city thinks,” Evans said.

The draft application was submitted to the city Transportation Department, which maintains the fences, but other departments may be brought to the table as well, he said.

Fences along Coast Boulevard just south of Scripps Park may be painted over or repaired.
Fences along Coast Boulevard just south of Scripps Park may be painted over or repaired through a project being shepherded by the La Jolla Parks & Beaches group.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

LJP&B member Tom Brady urged the group to seek funding and quick action because “a coat of paint on that fence would brighten everyone’s impression of La Jolla. … Now, the fences are deteriorating and it’s just awful. But it’s an easy fix.”

Evans said he is pursuing all avenues of funding for when the group gets to that point.

The working group’s effort comes after some residents voiced concern that the fences are chipping away.

“It’s a shame that whoever is in charge of La Jolla’s maintenance does not do anything about all this,” Claire Sheinberg said. “[It’s] very dangerous because the wood is so deteriorated that it became very weak. ... It is a real shame; it makes our area look horrible and neglected. The Cove is just a jewel tarnished by this.”

According to city spokesman Jerry McCormick, “if Parks [& Recreation] staff notice issues related to the fencing, they reach out directly to the Transportation Department.”

One section of fence near Coast Boulevard and Brockton Villa restaurant was repaired after a vehicle crashed through it and landed on the rocks below on Jan. 14. That section will not be part of the LJP&B project.

Firefighters rescued a driver in La Jolla the night of Jan. 14 after his vehicle went off Coast Boulevard and down a cliff, officials said.

Other LJP&B news

Board member leaves: Evans announced that longtime board member and former LJP&B President Dan Allen was stepping down from the board, and thanked him for his years of service.

“I hope you continue in your presence, support and work here,” Evans said. “I remember when I started on the board in 2016 — you were the president. You had a wealth of knowledge about the coastline and how to get things done and how things work. I still see that in you and see you as our knowledge base. Thank you for your time here … but I hope we won’t miss you because you will still be around.”

Allen did not comment about why he is leaving the board.

He joked that he recently found a box in his basement of La Jolla Parks & Beaches agendas and minutes from 1974.

The La Jolla Parks & Beaches group meets Jan. 23 at the La Jolla/Riford Library.
The La Jolla Parks & Beaches group meets Jan. 23 at the La Jolla/Riford Library.
(Ashley Mackin-Solomon)

Vacant seats: Though the normally 20-member board would typically fill vacancies during its January meeting in accord with its newly updated bylaws, Evans said no applications were filed. Thus, the two vacant board seats — including Allen’s — will be open until next January.

Still, Evans said the board allows volunteers to be on working groups. “You can still be active, participate and get your hands dirty with us and your voice will matter, but not as a voting member,” he said.

Further, the first of two three-year terms for six board members ended with the Jan. 23 meeting, including Allen. Evans told the La Jolla Light that “we’re working through all who want to continue in their [board] role for another term and who is done. ... It might be another month to finalize the roster.”

“We can do well with less than 20,” he added.

Anyone interested in joining the board can review the requirements and application information at or email

Bike Path plan: As part of a continuing plan to “re-naturalize” the La Jolla Bike Path, community volunteer Debbie Adams, who leads occasional cleanups of the path, said an informational presentation could be given to LJP&B as early as February. It would be similar — but updated — to the presentation given to the Bird Rock Community Council last year.

The plan is intended to “enhance the native environment and make it the best it can be,” according to La Jolla architect and urbanist Trace Wilson, who is shepherding the proposal.

With Adams, he cataloged the native plants in the area and broke the path into 11 segments, with a vegetation plan for each segment. Work also would create a serpentine path, repair eroded paths and add gabions (wire cages or baskets filled with rocks, concrete, sand or soil) to control erosion.

The Bike Path runs between Nautilus Street and Mira Monte and between La Canada and Camino de la Costa. It is used by bicyclists and pedestrians.

Next meeting: La Jolla Parks & Beaches next meets at 4 p.m. Monday, Feb. 27, at the La Jolla/Riford Library, 7555 Draper Ave. ◆