DEL MAR — The city’s first roundabout — on Jimmy Durante Boulevard at San Dieguito Drive — will include the official entry-point stone monument featuring the logo of a Torrey pine branch above the city name.
The design, chosen about a decade ago after “an extensive community process” and approved by the Design Review Board, was created by David Arnold, the artist responsible for transforming a dead tree stump into a red-tailed hawk at the south end of Del Mar.
The new monument will mimic the markers that welcome people as they enter the city in two other locations.
The estimated cost is $9,500 to $12,000, which includes funds for the materials, fabrication, metal work, podium and installation.
In 2007, when the design was approved, the Del Mar Village Association helped with funding.
“(S)taff is not recommending that the City request funding from DMVA to contribute toward this project,” the staff report states, noting the organization offered to work with the selected contractor on fabrication and installation.
“We were indicating that we could cover the costs as part of the project,” City Manager Scott Huth said. “If DMVA wants to pay for the sign that is OK.”
This past November there was a discussion about including the sign in the roundabout.
“This concept has been and continues to be mentioned by many community members as being an ideal location,” the staff report states, especially with the Breeders’ Cup coming to Del Mar for the first time this November.
Another suggested location was the “triangle” at the southeastern corner of Jimmy Durante
Boulevard and Via de la Valle, which is geographically closer to the city limit.
“I would discourage that because of all the competition of other signs that are going to be there and the lack of visibility,” Mayor Terry Sinnott said. “And David Arnold’s concept is he’s branding the village, not the fairgrounds.
“We’ve always been where the turf meets the surf, but we’re getting into trying to attract people to the village,” he added.
Feedback on the two options from the Parks and Recreation Committee had “mixed reviews … with no clear consensus,” the staff report states.
“I think it does make more sense (in the roundabout),” Councilman Dwight Worden said. “Regardless of where the actual boundary is, this is where you feel like you’re coming into Del Mar.”
“It does create the continuity from Via de la Valle and Camino del Mar and Carmel Valley Road and Camino del Mar,” Councilman Dave Druker added. “This kind of completes the triangle, shall we say, of the entrances into Del Mar.”
Druker noted there had been some negative comments about the landscaping in an online rendering, which was included in the staff report to provide a vision of what the sign would look like, not the plantings.
A detailed landscaping plan will be presented, possibly in May. Council needed to approve the sign so the stone used in the base, which is rare, could be ordered and received in time to create and install the monument before the Breeders’ Cup.