LJCPA back to full board


Three new members elected to fill vacancies

Three new trustees - Tom Brady, Robert Collins and Michael Costello - were elected to the La Jolla Community Planning Association at the group’s Aug. 7 monthly meeting bringing the group to a full complement of 18 members.

Brady’s term will be up in 2009. The terms of Collins and Costello will expire in 2010.

Joe La Cava, association president, noted the advisory group, which makes recommendations to the city on local planning and land use issues, has replaced 12 seats on its 18-member board the past year.

Tom Brady

Brady, a 41-year resident of La Jolla, is a retired accountant who is now a business owner involved in property management.

He has been active with various nonprofit organizations, including the La Jolla YMCA, for more than 30 years. He has served on architectural juries and was most recently La Jolla Town Council’s alternate representative on the La Jolla Community Parking Advisory Board.

Asked what work lies ahead for the advisory group, Brady replied, “the sensible enforcement of zoning laws. Short-term things that need to be addressed are the Children’s Pool Lifeguard Station (upgrade). Phil Merten (architect) has some excellent ideas on that. Hopefully, he’ll be a resource for the community.”

Robert Collins

A La Jollan since 1957, Collins has served on a plethora of community planning groups throughout the years. He has been an officer, trustee and president of La Jolla Town Council and a director on the board of Promote La Jolla, the community’s Business Improvement District.

He has also been a planning association member and has served on the Planned District Ordinance and Coastal Development Permit committees. He supports the La Jolla Community Plan, the Planned District Ordinance and the Coastal Act. Collins operates several businesses in the Jewel.

Collins said one of the most important issues that immediately needs to be addressed in La Jolla is the increasing traffic congestion on La Jolla Parkway.

“For those of us who drive that regularly,” he said, “it’s pretty obvious it’s backed way up to the top of the hill. People trying to get in here and can’t, that adversely affects our businesses, our merchants, everything. It’s a shame it has to be that way.”

Michael Costello

A retired scientist, Michael Costello is a Bird Rock resident who moved to La Jolla in 1988. Shortly after arriving, he began attending planning association and subcommittee meetings. In 2001, he became a founding member of the Bird Rock Traffic Calming Task Force, which ultimately led to creation of five roundabout traffic circles to slow traffic and beautify the community.

Costello joined the Bird Rock Beautification Committee to establish a Maintenance Assessment District to pay for upkeep of the roundabouts and their traffic medians. He has been actively involved in revising Bird Rock’s Planned District Ordinance and he is a proponent of the No Third Story grass-roots movement that seeks to bar third-story development within the city’s 30-foot height limit in La Jolla.

Costello said he would “like to spread (citizen) involvement more communitywide. I see the city moving to take away input from the community groups. It’s important the community groups have an input in the city process, because we are familiar with the streets, common problems.”