MacArthur Park Master Plan Timeline
The City of La Mesa first entered into a fifteen year lease agreement with Sun Valley Golf, LLC in 1997, to operate a nine-hole executive golf course in MacArthur Park. In 2012, a five-year option extended the term to October 2017. On May 20, 2017, operators of Sun Valley Golf Course notified the City of intent to terminate lease effective June 22, 2017. City Council directed staff to repurpose the 9 acres back to public use for future re-development of entire 22 acre park.
In June 2017, the City hired a landscape architect to draft a design for short term uses for the old golf course based on recommendations from the Parks Master Plan (such as trails, dog park, garden, disc golf, new access points, etc.)
In August 2017, the Community Services Commission hosted a public meeting to solicit input on proposed short term amenities; disc golf and additional neighborhood entrances were not preferred. Consultant KTU&A introduced the Opportunities and Constraints Study project that would look at long term options for the 22 acre park.
The Public Works Department and contractors completed maintenance to facilitate the transition of the former golf course to City management and opened to public in October 2017 as an open space park.
The Opportunity and Constraints Study's goal was to assess current uses and conditions of facilities to recommend opportunities for future facilities, upgrades, expansions and/or possible additions for increased benefit to the community for park and recreation purposes. In order to solicit public input, two outreach workshops and a formal public workshop were held in fall 2017, in addition to a survey.
In October 2017, the City solicited Request for Proposals (RFP) from firms to rehabilitate and operate the former golf club house, however, after a year of negotiations, no operating agreement was put into place.
In the fall of 2018, the Opportunity and Constraints Study recommendations were presented at a public meeting, to the Community Services Commission and at the Community Relations and Veterans Commission meeting. Recommendations included options for renovation of existing facilities and/or replacement facilities for the pool, recreation center and community center, in addition to a list of possible park amenities. City Council approved the study on November 27, 2018 and asked staff to move forward with the planning process to explore the option for new replacement facilities.
On October 29, 2019, the Master Plan consultant, KTU&A, continued work from the Opportunities and Constraints Study and hosted another public workshop and launched an online survey to narrow down possible amenities for a new community center, aquatics complex and park features.
The City executed a three-year Operating Agreement with the La Mesa Park and Recreation Foundation to operate a community garden at the former putting green and club house on February 14, 2020.
In July 2020, the Master Plan consultants presented two concept plans in an online presentation followed by a survey of the preferred options. The concepts were formulated from input from the 2019 workshop, the Opportunities and Constraints Study, the Parks Master Plan, Community Services Commission and staff. (View the full 22 minute presentation at https://youtu.be/pQ0S6WRssfo or 14 minute condensed version at https://youtu.be/Vh5v-3oStBw.) Results of the input revealed that Concept 1 (two separate buildings) were preferred with a hybrid of recommended park amenities.
March – summer 2021: KTU&A will prepare a final concept plan to present with the Master Plan to Commissions and the City Council for adoption in the future.