Over at Eagle Rock Patch this afternoon, commenter Betty Miller asked the following question:
Any idea what they are doing digging up the area behind ? Will it affect the the skateboard area?
As many Garvanza residents know, the area behind Luther Burbank Middle School is officially known as Garvanza Park. I'd driven by the park a few times in the past and noticed that the work was underway, but it wasn't until Betty posted her question that I decided to do some digging of my own.
I spoke to Tina Gulotta-Miller, who is a member of the Highland Park Heritage Trust and the Garvanza Improvement Association, and she explained to me that all the excavating is part of a watershed remidiaiton project.
She explained to Highland Park-Mount Washington Patch that when it rains, lots and lots of water from the San Gabriel Valley and the hills of Highland Park flow through a storm drain beneath Garvanza Park. During the waters' long journey from Bear Canyon it tends to accumulate pollutants raning from engine oil to fertilizer. All that water flows through the Arroyo Seco into the Los Angeles River and eventually the Pacific Ocean.
You can learn more about the Arroyo Seco .
In an effort the remediate that pollution, the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation and Northeast Tres are currently installing pair of cisterns beneath the park which will catch the water before it can flow into the river.
The water will be filtered in each cistern and from there, depending on which cistern it collects in, the water will either be allowed to settle into the groundwater or be used to irrigate the park during the dry months.
According to Northeast Trees, the total price tag for the project is $3.1 million, with most of those funds being secured by the office of Councilmember Jose Huizar.
Now what about that skate park? I swung by the neighborhood today and it looks like the project area is confined to the grassy section behind Luther Burbank, and will not have any effect on either the skate park or the baseball diamond. In fact, there was a large group of skaters at the park today conducting business as usual.
The work is set to be completed by the end of the summer, according a press release posted on Northeast Tree's blog. We'll be following this project closely the rest of the way.