Last weekend during my walk through Coronado I noticed a really beautiful work of art. A colorful mosaic, set into the travertine exterior of the Walgreens building on Orange Avenue, depicts a ferry crossing San Diego Bay crowned by a flock of seagulls.
According to my limited research, it appears that the mosaic was created in 1985 by Susan Hertel and Denis O’Connor, in collaboration with Millard Owen Sheets, who designed many Home Savings of America bank branches in California. The mosaic represents one of the historic ferryboats that once transported cars between Coronado and San Diego. Ferries for cars operated until 1969, the year the San Diego–Coronado Bridge opened.
When the artwork debuted, the building at 925 Orange Avenue was a Home Savings branch. Subsequently it became a Petco. As building occupants have come and gone, the extraordinary mosaic has been preserved.
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A big rush this morning. But I had enough time to walk down to the Broadway Pier. Slowing myself for a few moments, breathing in fresh air, I was enchanted by the surrounding quiet, the growing morning light, and mysterious reflections.
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About a block north of today’s touristy Coronado Ferry Landing, you’ll find the old ticket booth of Coronado’s original ferry. It stands beside a garden full of colorful roses and a pleasant walkway that runs from the end of Orange Avenue east to San Diego Bay. This beautiful area is called Centennial Park.
The original ferry was designed to transport horses and buggies; later ferries took automobiles across the bay. This vital link to downtown San Diego ran from 1886 to 1969, the year the Coronado Bay Bridge finally opened.
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These private yachts are docked directly behind the San Diego Convention Center. Some can be really huge. Most are gorgeous. Over the years, I’ve seen a few that have helicopters or small airplanes!
I took the above photo while riding the ferry to Coronado island. The building jutting up in the background is the Omni Hotel, which stands in the Gaslamp adjacent to Petco Park.
The following pics were taken at various different times:
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