Parks group updated on improvement plans for long-term beautification efforts
by DAVE SCHWAB
Published - 10/09/15 - 07:10 AM | 2517 views | 0 0 comments | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print
In September, La Jolla Parks and Beaches, Inc., which makes recommendations to the city on coastal parks, got updated on the status of two projects: Whale View Point Shoreline Enhancement and Children’s Pool Walkway Beautification.

Whale View Point Shoreline Enhancement is a long-term effort to spend about $2.1 million to beautify Whale View Point along Coast Boulevard. The project, to involve extensive landscaping, gazebo repair and removal of dead and overgrown vegetation on the cobblestone wall surrounding the Wedding Bowl, could take many years to complete.

Board member Ann Dynes noted Paul Vickrey of local Eagle Scout Troop 506 and other troop members recently performed a voluntary cleanup of, and painting in, the Whale View area.

“They got permits from the city and, over two days and three shifts, they painted the palapa and posts and the stairway as well as hauling away several bags of dead aloe (cactus),” Dynes said. “It was quite a project, all done by hand without use of power or mechanical tools. About 25 Scouts spent 100 man-hours doing the whole project.”

Dynes noted one objective of the Whale View improvement project is to eliminate “urban drool,” badly managed and poorly planned urban growth adversely impacting the environment and natural aesthetics.

Landscape architect Jim Neri clued the parks group in on the latest developments with proposed beautification of the popular Children’s Pool’s walkway.

Walkway improvements are to include streamlined pedestrian flow along Coast Walk, double-seat walls similar to existing ones at Shell Beach and Seal Rock, the planting of shade trees, the addition of interpretive/historical/educational signage near the new lifeguard station and use of native plants on the bluffs to control erosion.

“We came up with this plan, which creates public area out of deteriorated landscape, allowing more space for people to enjoy this very scenic spot,” Neri said. “It includes planting and seeding of some areas to improve the overall landscaping.”

Neri estimated design of walkway improvements is about 90 percent complete.

“We’ll then take it (walkway beautification) to the next level with the city, which is actually to build it,” Neri said, adding, “We will be ready to construct this project next year after the summer construction moratorium.”

Neri said restoration of a historic gazebo on Children’s Pool Walkway will not be part of current planned improvements.

“It could be a future project, but it would need a coastal development permit to do it,” he said.

Longtime La Jollan Sally Miller pointed out that planning for Children’s Pool Walkway improvements ought to consider installation of corrosion-resistant aluminum fencing, like that used on Catalina Island which has endured for 30 years.

Parks and Beaches chair Dan Allen noted that if any money is left over from the current walkway enhancement project, that could be used to spruce up the historic gazebo.

“We also need to fix the stairs there ,which are going to collapse,” pointed out board member Melinda Merryweather.

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