The parking lot behind The Village Grille will be transformed into a pop-up plaza, as an experiment to create an urban space where people can meet and enjoy the Village.
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Pop-up plaza part of Village and Barrio update

CARLSBAD—The city is revitalizing the Carlsbad Village and Barrio. Officials are asking the public to take part in the Master Plan update in order to create a defined vision and development plan for the future.

The city’s Master Plan maps out future growth, the city is able to build once funding becomes available.

Input is needed from the community so that residents’ wishes are reflected in the update, which Jason King of Urban Place, one of the contractors for the project, thinks will be no problem.

“It’s rare that we see such a committed citizenry,” said King.

The city has contracted with Urban Place and Dover, Kohl & Partners to develop the Master Plan.

As a means to draw attention to the possibilities for the area, Urban Place has organized a pop-up plaza on State Street, next to Village Grille for the week between Sept. 15 and Sept. 18.

The project team is going to paint the parking lot a bright color and set up chairs and tables for people passing by.

In the evenings, the pop-up plaza will be lit for people to continue to enjoy it into the night.

“Even back in the days of Ancient Greece the agora served as a central location where people could meet and gather,” said Ashley Westman of Urban Place. “A lot of newer cities lack that space because they developed after the invention of the car. There isn’t a central location in the Village, and this is a natural spot to experiment with this.”

Different events are offered throughout the week, including free yoga Monday morning at 8:30 a.m. and a farmer’s market craft fair on Wednesday at 3:00 p.m.

On Sept. 20, the space will be filled with musicians as part of the Carlsbad Music Festival.

Project manager for the master plan, Scott Donnell, said the conversion is an experiment to show residents the possibilities of the Village.

“We’re converting this parking lot into a temporary plaza as an example of a change that can take place in the Village and Barrio when we open a public gathering place,” said Donnell. “It will call attention to the possibilities that a Village and Barrio master plan can help us realize.”

Residents are able to give their input online or at any of the workshops happening

Sept. 10 through Sept. 17 from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (except Saturday) at the Carlsbad Inn Beach Resort Village Terrace.

When giving the kick-off presentation to city council Tuesday, King reported that 87 percent of residents in the Barrio and 84 percent of residents in the Village rent their homes or apartments.

That is much higher than Carlsbad as whole, with the renting population making up 36 percent.

The final presentation will be Sept. 18 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Carlsbad Village Theatre, 2822 State St., to wrap-up the community input sessions.