La Jolla leaders share wishes for 2015

As another year begins and the La Jolla Town Council prepares to host its inaugural “State of La Jolla” event 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 8 at La Jolla Rec Center, the La Jolla Light asked an array of community leaders to share their wishes for La Jolla in 2015 — be it something he or she would like to change, improve or see come to fruition. Here is what each who responded had to say:

Sherry Ahern, volunteer and philanthropist, founder of La Jolla Open Aire Farmers Market and La Jolla Art & Wine Festival

“I want to see the Village ‘Sparkle & Shine,’ and help with continued improvements, and the cleaning La Jolla so badly needs and deserves.

I hope for more community events and am looking forward to the opening of the theatres and music center (on Fay Avenue), and new shops and restaurants.

Most of all, I want to encourage all La Jolla residents to get more involved.

Support, eat and shop local. Enjoy the Jewel we are so privileged to live in!”

Jacqueline Bell, volunteer/president Bird Rock Community Council

“In Bird Rock we are looking forward to the completion of the La Jolla Hermosa Park (aka Rock Park) sidewalk project this year.”

Hugh Davies, director Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

“The last year has been marked by many changes for La Jolla and my wish would be to see continued progress. As we respect and honor La Jolla’s distinguished history, we also embrace the future and will work eagerly in 2015 toward creating a better Museum of Contemporary Art.”

Steve Haskins, president, La Jolla Town Council

“I’d like to see a resurgence of civic involvement by La Jollans. We often hear complaints about problems in our town — from potholes to traffic to overbuilding. What is needed is a higher level of involvement from residents and businesspeople to help solve these problems. We, as La Jollans, need to take personal responsibility to protect and preserve our small-town atmosphere. I would ask everyone to set aside some time in their busy schedules to get involved. The Town Council is here to work with you, please e-mail me with any ideas or questions at”

Joe LaCava, president, La Jolla Community Planning Association

“My hope is that 2015 continues to be a year of collaboration, building on the good work by community leaders, foundations and organizations. In particular, I hope we fund the Belvedere Promenade project on Prospect Street; refine the La Jolla Shores Planned District Ordinance to make it more predictable for everyone; and, enable the emerging cultural center in the 7600 block of Fay Avenue.”

Sherri Lightner, president, San Diego City Council

“My biggest wish for La Jolla in 2015 is to make major progress on the Torrey Pines Road Corridor Project, including the construction on Phase 1, which is set to begin in late January/early February, along with design on Phase 2, which can move forward now that funding was approved in December 2014.”

Tim Lucas, board chair, La Jolla Shores Association

“I would like to see more people taking an interest in, and participating in, their community. One of the best ways to participate is becoming aware of the community groups in the area and attending their meetings and subscribing to their e-mail lists.

There are the La Jolla Shores Association, the La Jolla Community Planning Association, the Bird Rock Community Council, the La Jolla Historical Society and other groups in the area that serve the La Jolla community.

There are also important committees, such as La Jolla Parks & Beaches, the La Jolla Recreation Council, Traffic & Transportation, Friends of La Jolla Shores and several Permit Review committees.

If you are a merchant, participate in the business association for your district. These organizations and committees periodically have vacancies or hold elections and always need new people onboard. Get involved, stay informed in 2015.”

Phil Merten, chair, La Jolla Shores Permit Review Committee

“I would like to see upper limits placed on Floor Area Ratios (FARs) for projects on properties zoned as single-family residential within the La Jolla Shores Planned District, so as not to exceed the maximum allowed FARs for single-family residential zoned properties elsewhere in La Jolla.”

Scott Peters, congressmember, 52nd District

“In the coming year we need to make investing in scientific research a priority in the federal budget. This would benefit companies across La Jolla that are making cutting-edge discoveries every day and creating high-quality jobs. I also hope the residents of La Jolla will continue engaging with me to share their comments and ideas.”

Phyllis Pfeiffer, chair, La Jolla Community Foundation

“My one wish would be that all La Jolla civic and charitable organizations work together toward a common goal, to leverage our talent and resources to improve the community.”

Ione Stiegler, architect/chair of La Jolla Planned District Ordinance committee

“My wish for La Jolla in 2015 would be for all the Village businesses to aid in the beatification of our town by removing their illegal sidewalk signs and flags that are cluttering our public sidewalks.”

Erika Torri, director, Athenaeum Music & Arts Library

“My wish is that we will continue to attract a large audience for our diverse programming in art and music, and that the Murals of La Jolla Project, which is now under the administration of the Athenaeum, continues to be a much loved La Jolla icon, embraced and accepted as a visual identity for the Village.”

Nancy Warwick, Sparkle & Shine campaign organizer, La Jolla Village Merchants Association board member

“Happy New Year, La Jolla! I have two resolutions that I’d like to see every business owner or manager adopt, in an effort to increase business in the Village.

First, keep your sidewalks clean and pick up trash several times a day.

Second, save the time-limited street parking for the customers and don’t take the spots for yourself or your employees.

These are two simple and easily implemented ways to attract more business to the Village, and to foster a greater sense of community and pride. Let’s get it done!”