Since its founding in 1960, the PLA, a nonprofit with a 20-member board and 10 committees, has worked diligently to enhance the quality of life for Point Loma residents, businesses and visitors through the implementation of strategic and impactful public space improvements.
“The PLA board is continuing to meet monthly online,” said Clark Burlingame, PLA board member, and past chair, on the status of ongoing projects.
“Our Anchor Lights Project is going through the City’s Development Services Department,” said Burlingame. “After the first review, revisions are underway and we plan to submit again within the next couple of weeks. Board member JT Barr heads that effort.”
The PLA received a $60,000 grant from the county for the multi-phased Anchor Lights project. The project will install a series of string lights across Rosecrans Street from Talbot to Cañon Street, creating a beacon of light highlighting the importance of the historic Point Loma Village.
Another project on the PLA’s plate is a redo of the front landscaping for SDFD Fire Station 20 to eliminate weeds/grass replacing those with water-wise plants, rock, etc., being spearheaded by PLA master gardener Karen Davis.
“Our Mean Green Team has been ‘furloughed’ during the pandemic,” noted Burlingame. “However, individual members have continued to work on their own (weeding, pruning, picking up trash), wearing masks but leaving their green vests at home. In the next few weeks, they hope to get back to their weekly Friday morning work parties, using appropriate health protection.”
Founded in the 1990s and about 50 members strong, The Mean Green team does everything from planting, weeding, and trimming to removing graffiti.
The PLA is also known for hosting “community conversations” featuring local panelists discussing issues of community importance.
“Community Conversations are on hold,” pointed out Burlingame. “We had an outstanding panel lined up for an April program on the changes coming to Midway (SANDAG CEO Hasan Ikhrata, Navy Captain Brien Dickson, City Council member Jennifer Campbell, Midway-Pacific Highway Community Planning Group chair Cathy Kenton). “However we had to cancel.”
Past PLA chair Robert Tripp Jackson said there’s been a trash problem in Point Loma Village during the pandemic.
“During recent weeks, I’ve noticed trash bins throughout the Peninsula overflowing with trash,” he said asking, “Have they been forgotten? You’d think during these times we would want to avoid situations like this. This very easily could result in a health hazard.”
Tripp Jackson said when he reported the trash problem on the City’s Get It Done App, the response he got back was, “they were in front of a residence or business and it was their responsibility.”
“I don’t think you are going to find a residence or business out there emptying and sanitizing these trash cans,” countered Tripp Jackson.
“The containers in question are serviced as part of a regularly scheduled route,” said City spokesperson Jennifer McBride. “The number of litter containers located in the area (Voltaire, Bacon, and Cable) is 20. The containers located on Voltaire are serviced three times per week: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, while those located on Bacon and Cable five days per week: Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The staff has been directed to service this area and we plan on spot-checking the area more frequently to ensure this issue is remedied.”
PLA also maintains 20 public green spaces in Point Loma. PLA volunteers: transform asphalt and concrete medians and parkways into landscaped islands of natural beauty; install community signs, lights, landmarks, benches, and banners; create a patchwork of public art through utility box art, murals, and sculptures; pick-up litter; clean-up homeless camps; remove graffiti; call for the removal of billboards and power lines, and advocate to improve quality of life.