Thursday, July 26, 2007

Oros Green Street

Oros Park
Originally uploaded by CD-13
Three years ago, voters passed Proposition O with 76% of the vote, one of the highest approval rating for any bond in the city's history. The half-billion dollar water quality initiative gave us the means to clean our watershed, and we are already realizing the benefits. I joined Councilmember Reyes, the President of the Board of Public Works Cynthia Ruiz, and Larry Smith from Northeast Trees at the opening of Oros Green Street, the first stormwater infiltration street in the city. Strategically positioned to capture runoff from the surrounding hills of Elysian Park, Oros Street has long seen water flow over it and into the LA River, polluting our watershed and eventually endangering the lives of children and adults alike swimming in the ocean or playing at the beach.

With funding from Prop O and state and federal sources, Northeast Trees put together a project that shows how our infrastructure can purify, rather than contaminate, our water-- and how we can do it green. Using gravel and natural filtration techniques, Oros Street will now take the same water it once merely conveyed to the river and now clean it, while providing green space that beautifies the community along the river.

Oros marks the first complete Prop O project, and also marks the success of the city in meeting its federal water quality standards. We are the only city in the nation in compliance with our Total Maximum Daily Load compliance timeline, thanks to the installation of hundreds of catch basins throughout the city and projects like Oros. As we continue to take our water destiny into our own hands, Oros provides a model of how we can make our water pure using green infrastructure.