Blumenfield Champions and Secures Council Support for New River Park in the Valley
The Trust for Public Land will develop critically needed open space in Reseda as part of the Los Angeles River Revitalization Master Plan.
LOS ANGELES – Taking swift action before an important end-of-the year deadline, Councilmember Bob Blumenfield today secured council approval to allow The Trust for Public Land, in partnership with the City of Los Angeles, to move forward on the Aliso Creek Confluence Project that will bring critically needed open space to Reseda along the banks of the Los Angeles River. Without today’s council action, funding for the park would have been lost, and its future uncertain.
“I was proud to support this project since its inception and throughout my time representing the San Fernando Valley in the California State Assembly. When I took office in July, I made bringing this project over the finish line one of my top priorities. This project will add open space, improve bike connectivity and is a great opportunity to move forward on a project envisioned both by the LA River Revitalization Master Plan and the newly passed Warner Center 2035 master plan,” said Blumenfield.
Nearly five years in the making, the Los Angeles River and Aliso Creek Confluence Project will create a two-acre park, one mile of walking paths, and three-quarter miles of bicycle path and greenway, 14 decorative entrance gates and a 100-foot long mural in the densely populated, urban community of Reseda. The project will transform a vacant lot alongside the river into a natural space that will provide habitat for wildlife and recreational green space for local residents. In total the Aliso Creek Confluence project will bring nearly seven acres of new open space the Los Angeles River and Aliso Creek.
With nearly $1.5 million in State funding through the California Strategic Growth Council Urban Greening Program and a Community Development Block Grant of $255,000, the project is fully funded. Because the Urban Greening grant required that all use agreements are in place before the funds were released, action before the end of the year was crucial for the success of the project.
“For the City Council, this is a tremendous opportunity,” continued Blumenfield. “We’re expanding recreation opportunities in a dense urban area while taking a big step forward towards greening the Valley and realizing our shared vision for a vibrant riverfront throughout Los Angeles, starting at the headwaters in Canoga Park. It’s a win for the City, a win for the River and a win for the Valley and Reseda.”
Joining the Councilmember to advocate for the project were Robin Mark from The Trust for Public Land, Interim General Manager of the Bureau of Engineering Deborah Weintraub, Megan Whalen from the LA River Project Office, Michael Shull, the Interim General Manager of Recreation and Parks and Darryl Ford, Management Analyst from the Department of Recreation and Parks.
“This project has been a longstanding priority for The Trust for Public Land. We’ve been working on the river for years and the fact that this project will tie in to the larger River Plan makes this a great opportunity for our organization and for the entire Reseda community,” said Mark.
Today’s council action clears the way for The Trust for Public Land to begin developing construction documents for the park. Construction documents are expected to be complete and fully reviewed and approved by all parties by spring 2015.
Once built, the Aliso Creek Confluence Project will connect to and enhance a planned 50-mile network of bicycle and walking paths along the LA River and provide the opportunity to expand the network along the river’s 51 miles.
Environmental benefits of the project include decreasing air pollution, diminishing the consumption of natural resources and energy, helping plants, animals, and people adapt to climate change, increasing the reliability of local water supplies, and capturing, cleaning, and infiltrating stormwater before it enters the Los Angeles River and, ultimately, the Pacific Ocean.
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