The Coast News Group

New light fixtures coming to the Ranch

RANCHO SANTA FE — At its Oct. 7 meeting, the Association approved eight new plastic globe lights with a Spanish Colonial style to replace the current round pilaster-mounted lighted light fixtures currently at the parking lot on the southwest corner of La Flecha and Via De Santa Fe.
The lights are at the entry and exits to the post office and market parking lot on a property owned by the Woolley family.
Each of the eight entrances requires a sign that warns against towing if a vehicle is parked there illegally.
Patricia Woolley told the board she knows the signs are horrible, but required by law.
She said the new signs that will go up with the new light fixtures are much more attractive.
Steve Shillington, who was representing the Woolley family at the meeting, said the signs became necessary several years ago, when a landscaping truck with a large sign kept parking in the parking lot, almost seemingly taking up residence there.
The owner of the truck was asked several times to move his rig, but to no avail.
As a result, the owners of the property had the rig towed which brought a lawsuit down on the Woolleys.
To avoid such troubles in the future, it was suggested to them to post the limitations of the parking lot.
The state requires such signs to be large, plain and attached to each opening in the parking lot.
“It seems so un-Rancho Santa Fe-ish,” said board member Jack Queen.
Patricia Woolley agreed and said that everyone else is cordial and they have never had any trouble from anyone other than this particular party.
In a presentation given by Robert Green, building commissioner, the Art Jury considered the new lighting and gave it the OK last month.
“The Art Jury does not typically approve light fixtures on top of pilasters in residential areas because of the potential for proliferation of highly visible light sources throughout the community,” he said.
The Art Jury believes that numerous fixtures such as these would not be aesthetically pleasing and would be in opposition to the “dark sky” standard to which the Covenant adheres.
Because the fixtures are for a commercial complex with outdoor parking and are surrounded by buildings that limit the visibility of such lights, the Art Jury approved the fixtures, but would still like to see them after they have been installed after dark.
Green said the fixtures would be about two feet high, would have opaque glass and a maximum 150-watt lamp.
“It’s a different style of fixture. It is more ornamental,” he said.