There’s one thing John Jones knows for certain after 40 years with the city of Torrance in its recreation department, now as the city’s director of community services. People are passionate about their parks.
This was definitely the case at Miramar Park, which sits near the border with Redondo Beach at the end of The Esplanade. Locally known as dolphin park for the sculpture that’s displayed prominently since the 1980s, this small piece of open space has stirred up some big emotions lately.
Likely frustration over the sculpture being fenced off since March lead to someone removing the fence and tossing it into the ocean.
Jones said it was unfortunate people had that reaction because efforts were already in the works to repair both the well-worn dolphin and the decaying rubberized surface below.
“To me that’s not the right way to do business,” said Jones. “People are very passionate about their parks and we just have to work together to find solutions.”
Jones and other officials with the city of Torrance held a community meeting at the park in June to solicit ideas on how locals would like the dolphin to be restored.
“What we heard was that people wanted it repaired and replaced exactly as it was, which is not surprising,” Jones said.
At issue was the crumbling rubberized surface that had become a trip and fall hazard as well as flaking and a small fissure in the dolphin itself. Following the meeting, something extraordinary happened from Jones’ perspective.
Stepping forward were local residents Jamie Davis whose concrete company Rosalie Ellen, named after…
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