Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Marsh Park

Once a civic punchline, the Los Angeles River is quickly shining through as the “emerald necklace” of our city. With Marsh Park, which I dedicated with Supervisor Gloria Molina in a well-attended ceremony, we see yet another glint of green, this one opposite Taylor Yards. Marsh Park joins the pocket parks that I've been proud to dedicate at Elysian Valley's street ends since I’ve been in office.

In addition to providing a shady, green place to sit (on a snake! see pic), Marsh Park incorporates an innovative approach to managing stormwater runoff from the neighborhood. Through a section of concrete drainage pipe that has since been removed, stormwater used to empty, untreated, into the river through the park. The ground has been lowered so that the dirty water coming from the city storm drains filters through the ground. The park has been replanted with native marshland and upland plants, which will assist with water infiltration and encourage birds, mammals, and insects such as butterflies to inhabit the area.

Elysian Valley residents Ray and Cecilia Dominguez deserve special thanks for their part in this. They opened their home for community meetings to gather input. Now they can see the fruit of their labor, right around the corner from their home!

I should also thank the teenagers from ArtShare who created the frog, snake, and turtle for sitting and playing on. The young adults who make up the Los Angeles Conservation Corps built the park. And the project could not have been done without the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy/MRCA, which continues to push for a greenbelt along the Los Angeles River.