OCEANSIDE, Calif. — Lovebirds from around San Diego will be able to add their own personal touch to a new sculpture on the coast in North County.

The “love lock” sculpture will be installed between the Oceanside Harbor and Harbor Beach. Titled “Love the O,” the piece was approved in a vote by the Oceanside City Council in a meeting Wednesday.

The sculpture is 10-feet by 10-feet and features an arc with a heart in the center, bound by a grid of metal bars. Those bars are what makes the “love lock” concept possible. Visitors will be invited to place a padlock on the grid, engraved or otherwise marked to represent a birth, a marriage, a loved one or some other sentimental meaning.

An example of a “love lock” that will be offered to $1,000 contributors to a new sculpture near the harbor in Oceanside. (Photo: City of Oceanside)

City leaders say the sculpture, built by the Vista-based Randall Art Ranch, will be made of Corten steel. “Sometimes called weathering steel, the metal is designed to develop a protective weathered surface which ages to a rusty, earthy look without losing its durability due to the salty sea air,” the city’s Harbor Division explained in a news release.

The sculpture will be funded by donations. People who give $1,000 or more will receive a decorative lock featuring a heart and a custom engraving. Fifty-five of those donors will place their special locks at a grand opening celebration that kicks off the new tradition.

The city hopes the piece will “add to the eclectic and vibrant arts environment in downtown Oceanside.” And it will provide a perfect spot for people seeking a beauty shot.

“The sculpture also aims to create opportunities for dramatic, fun photos, as the sun will be captured at sunset in the sculpture’s open heart center,” the city said.

The city did not provide an expected completion date for the piece.