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Flooding closes gym on La Jolla’s Pearl Street

Intense rain the past couple days has caused flooding damage to several businesses in La Jolla’s downtown Village, completely flooding out Athletic Nation fitness at 702 Pearl St., forcing it to close.

“Yesterday it happened so fast, we were in the midst of training for clients and it was like a river started gushing into my gym,” said tearful gym owner Betsy Retana. “It came in through the cracks in the sides of the front door and went all the way back to my cardio room area. There was knee-high water in the gym.”

Retana said Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza a next door also sustained damage but her business which is at the lowest point got the worst of it.

Retana added her employees and others helped to clear debris with their bare hands from nearby drains but noted by that time “the damage had already been done.”

“It’s put us out of business,” she added. “We can’t operate in this condition.”

A block away, at El Pescador Fish Market at 627 Pearl St., roof runoff during the most intense period of rain Wednesday during the dinner hour created a visual display which also hampered parking.

“There’s a spout where water drains off and it was coming down like a waterfall,” said restaurant employee John Trotter. “People trying to park right in front of our store last night between 5 and 8 p.m. had water rushing up their tires and off their hoods.

They said, ‘We can’t handle that,’ and moved on. The best (parking) spot was open there for the dinner rush.”