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Almost There: Lifeguards prepare their move into new La Jolla Cove tower

San Diego lifeguards (seasonal and permanent) have spent the week of Oct. 19 making the final recommendations for adjustments to the newly finished La Jolla Cove lifeguard tower, as they prepare to move in completely. The guards are splitting their coverage between the new observation tower and secondary scaffold tower, and hope to take full possession of the new tower by Friday, Oct. 23.

Lifeguards can use these retractable binoculars to enhance views from the tower.
Lifeguards can use these retractable binoculars to enhance views from the tower.
(Ashley Mackin)

Lifeguards have spent time in the new observation deck looking for any minor changes to ensure unobstructed views. Issues that have come up so far, said one lifeguard, include making sure the chair in which the guards sit positions them at a height so they can see completely over the surrounding rail, and avoiding glare from the sun-protectant transparent shades over the windows.

Lifeguards have already moved into the lower facility, which has windows to assist with watching the ocean, where they have restrooms, shower facilities and storage.

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In addition to the new observation tower for lifeguards, a new observation deck for beach-goers is in place at La Jolla Cove.
In addition to the new observation tower for lifeguards, a new observation deck for beach-goers is in place at La Jolla Cove.
(Ashley Mackin)

The new observation tower is 80 square feet with a steel frame and wood siding on a concrete cantilevered base. An access ramp to the mid-level landing overlooking the Cove has been installed, but new benches need to be added at the mid-level area with storage cubbies for swimmers. The $1.85 million cost is being funded through the use of deferred capital bonds and development impact fees. Originally scheduled to be complete in December 2014, unforeseen delays continued to push back the completion date to this month. With the construction equipment and temporary lifeguard observation facility gone, the park area just above The cove at Scripps Park will be re-vegetated, said Myrna Dayton, the city’s deputy director of field engineering with the public works department.

“We will plant new grass (shortly), but it will need to be established, so we’ll have orange fencing around it and we’re going to need the support of the community to get that vegetation established,” she said.