Vision for new OB Veterans’ Plaza to be unveiled Sept. 12
by Tony de Garate
Published - 09/04/13 - 02:30 PM | 5249 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The latest design of a plaza that will honor America’s veterans while underscoring the iconic vibe of the Ocean Beach community will be unveiled next week.

Steve Grosch, who has chaired a yearlong effort to replace the worn-out, difficult-to-decipher sidewalk medallions at the current Veterans’ Plaza at the foot of Newport Avenue, said the design will be displayed in public for the first time at the monthly meeting of the Ocean Beach Community Development Corporation on Sept. 12 at 7 p.m. at the Ocean Beach Recreation Center, 4726 Santa Monica Ave.

The new plaza will be based on the “Life Journey” design first unveiled by the design firm KTU+A during a public workshop hosted by the OBCDC in April. The plan also calls for the plaza to be moved to the grassy area on Abbott Street, immediately south of the lifeguard tower.

“Life Journey” emphasizes a beach feel and reflects the importance and significance of coastline, designers said. It’s a walkway that runs from Abbott Street to a gathering plaza next to the sand, and features four granite walls with the names of the honorees.

Feedback showed “Life Journey” to be overwhelmingly preferred over the other design option, “Defenders of the World,” Grosch said. That design was more formal and traditional, featuring an amphitheater with two-level seating overlooking a globe design paved on the ground, facing a curved wall of polished granite.

Even though the public preferred “Life Journey,” they expressed several concerns through workshops, surveys and online comments. Grosch said KTU+A has done “an amazing job” finding a solution to the concerns in the latest design.

In addition, a few popular features from the “Defenders” design — like a storyboard documenting major conflicts — have been incorporated in the final design, Grosch said.

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