The public is invited to view designs and hear updates about the El Dorado Nature Center Stream Restoration Project at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, November 5 at the El Dorado Nature Center Museum, 7550 E. Spring Street in Long Beach. Parking for this event will be free. The City has developed plans for a design build project that will restore the streams between the Center's two lakes. Construction will take approximately four to six months, during which time the walking trails adjacent to the stream will be closed.
The stream restoration will utilize sustainable bioengineering techniques, including the use of live willow poles and stakes, brush layering, and coir fabric blankets. Rather than installing "hard" structures such as concrete or riprap, "soft" structures that emulate processes present in natural streams will be implemented. Incorporating an understanding of natural stream flows and using plants, logs, and boulders to direct those flows will prevent future erosion. Replacing non-native vegetation along the banks with more appropriate native riparian vegetation will reduce future maintenance. The project will also replace the five pedestrian bridges that cross the stream.
Created in 1969, the El Dorado Nature Center is a 102-acre public environmental, educational, and recreation center. The Center contains two lakes connected by a stream, which is approximately a half-mile long. During the nearly 40 years that the Nature Center has been in existence, vegetation has grown to shade and clog the stream. Storms have eroded the banks, depositing silt along the stream bottom. Leaves and branches that have fallen into the water have decayed and accumulated on the stream bottom, causing the stream to become shallower. The resulting wider and shallower stream does not provide healthy aquatic or riparian habitat and is eroding into the walking trail.
The Nature Center stream restoration is being funded by grants from the State of California through the Proposition 12, the Safe Neighborhood Parks Act of 2000 and from the Rivers and Mountains Conservancy through Proposition 40, the statewide Parks Bond Act approved in 2002. Mitigation will be paid for by McDonnell Douglas for violations under the Clean Water Act. Permits for the project have been secured from the California Department of Fish and Game, the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board, and the United States Army Corps of Engineers.
For more information on this meeting, contact Sharon Gates, Planning and Development Bureau Analyst at (562) 570-3124. For information on other Long Beach Department of Parks, Recreation and Marine programs, call (562) 570-3100 or visit www.lbparks.org, sign up for E-notify and we'll e-mail you the latest information!