The La Jolla Cove Pavilion is a long-term project to replace outdated and deteriorating restroom-shower facilities with an attractive, sustainable pavilion honoring the beauty of the Cove and Scripps Park.
Bill Magnuson of the La Jolla architectural firm of Mosher Drew, gave a slideshow presentation detailing plans for Cove shower-restroom improvements, the preliminary design of which was performed by Safdie Rabines Architects of La Jolla.
The architect used a metaphor to characterize the planned restroom-shower facility's schematic design, which is now 30 percent complete.
“The roof is to be like a leaf gently settling into the forest in the trees amongst the park,” Magnuson said. “It's actually two separate buildings with a butterfly roof, which is an open-trellis type structure hovering above it (restroom showers).”
Magnuson said Mosher Drew has refined Safdie Rabines' original design making minor changes, including creating more enclosed dumpster space and making the exterior of the buildings a sandstone color “like bluffs in La Jolla.” He added the roof will allow rainwater drainage into gutters, as well has having transparent plastic to protect the interiors of the buildings.
There are also a couple of “options” built into Mosher Drew's schematic plans, which Magnuson said could involve a “blue motif on the back wall, and/or introduction of clear or opaque panels.”
La Jolla Parks and Beaches (LJPB) board member Dr. Jane Reldan expressed concern about plans to remove mature trees around the new pavilion noting replacing them will “be a long time with no shade on the north side of these buildings.”
“Why not leave the trees there?” asked board member Cindy Greatrex, who pointed out replacement trees will be much smaller and take a long time to grow.
City engineers answered that they've been told that existing trees “might not be able to survive all the construction.” Magnuson noted that “substantial” trees in planters are proposed for the new development.
“Isn't the smooth concrete upper part of the building just waiting for graffiti?,” queried board member Phyllis Minick.
Magnuson answered there are building treatments that can be done to building exteriors to make them easier to paint over.
“This (design) feels utilitarian, plain,” noted board member John Shannon. “People who come to La Jolla are in awe of the beauty. They're shocked when they look at our restroom facility now. It would seem like an opportunity to tell a story in some way, by doing something with the stone or cobble work.”
Board member Melinda Merryweather agreed. “To me this building has the feeling of a 1950s elementary school,” she said. “I'd love to have cobblestones going up the wall on the bottom. The park is so beautiful. The buildings seem so cold. I wish we could warm it up.”
LJPB board voted 14-2 to approve conceptual design plans with city officials pledging to return with more detailed plans later for final review.
Board member Patrick Ahern introduced a proposal to improve the Black's Lookout used by surfers at 9078 La Jolla Shores Lane.
“The lookout is dirty and old and it's a mess, and the fence up there is now falling,” said Ahern. “What we'd like to do is beautify it, not make it a place for people to hang out, just enhance the open space that already exists. The game plan would be to create a new view fence, so we have a nice lookout.”
Merryweather noted a trash can and a bench would be appropriate for the lookout, and asked that those two items be included in a motion to conceptually approve Ahern's lookout plan. The group vote, with chair Dan Allen casting a tie-making vote, denied the amendment. The group then voted 14-3 in favor of the lookout's preliminary conceptual design.