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Councilmembers Ed Reyes [far left] and Eric Garcetti [far right] present North East Trees Executive Director Larry Smith and President Scott Wilson

LOS ANGELES (July 20, 2007) – A dedication ceremony for the very first “Green Street” project in Los Angeles took place on July 26, 2007 for the Oros Green Street Project in Elysian Valley. City of Los Angeles Public Works Board President Cynthia M. Ruiz, was on hand along with Councilmembers Ed Reyes (CD1) and Eric Garcetti (CD to dedicate the project site on Oros Street, between Blake Street and the Los Angeles River.

One of several projects aimed at revitalizing the Los Angeles River, "…the Oros Green Street Project marks the first time a neighborhood sub-watershed will contribute no pollutants to the Los Angeles River" Ruiz said. To do this, the project will capture both wet weather and dry weather runoff from private residences, and clean it through a series of soil filtration and vegetative bio-retention treatments. "Only clean water, if any, from this neighborhood will enter the Los Angeles River," noted Ruiz.

Funded through State Water Resource Control Board and City of Los Angeles Proposition “O” Bond Program grants, Oros Green Street also marks the completion of the first Proposition O funded project in the City.

“Los Angeles voters passed Proposition O in November 2004,” said Ruiz. “The measure authorized $500 million in general obligation bonds for projects to protect public health by cleaning up pollution, including bacteria and trash, in the City’s watercourses, beaches, and in the ocean.” The proposition will fund future improvement projects aimed at protecting water quality and providing flood protection, among other things.

Construction of this “first” project in Los Angeles was a cumulative partnership of City Council District 13, NorthEast Trees, and the Public Works Bureaus of Street Services, Engineering, and Sanitation. The Special Projects Division of the Street Services Bureau helped NorthEast Trees refine the design concept and was directly responsible for improvements within the public-right-of-way. Both the Bureaus of Engineering and Sanitation helped with funding and the concept report.

Both dry and wet weather runoff from Oros Street (between Blake Avenue and the Los Angeles River) will be captured and cleaned through a series of soil infiltration and vegetative bio-retention treatments. Utilizing technology not previously used by City forces, the Bureau of Street Services constructed five stormwater gardens along Oros Street. The gardens are areas in the parkway which filter water and hold it for a small amount of time, before discharging it to Steelhead Park. The Park itself also assists in the removal of pollutants.


The Oros Street Green Project lies within close proximity and drains to the Los Angeles River (click for larger view).

North East Trees Executive Director Larry Smith declared, “We are very excited about our partnership with the City of Los Angeles.” He heralds the Oros Green Street project as “a model of project sustainability that is helping to restore nature’s services for our neighborhoods, our city and our Los Angeles River.”

Calling Oros Street “the first of many green streets to be constructed within the City,” Board President Ruiz thanked staff from the Bureaus of Engineering, Sanitation, and Street Services for their collaborative ef-fort with North East Trees to deliver the Oros Green Street Project in “the most expedient and cost effective manner.”

Filtration systems installed on the street’s driveways.

The Oros Green Street Project was designed to capture stormwater runoff from private homes and a residential street, then clean it through a series of soil filtration and vegetative bioretention treatments before it flows into the adjacent Los Angeles River through the storm drain system. This, while simultaneously improving and beautifying a neighborhood with new infrastructure and greenspace.

Left to right: Chris Salvaggio, Kendrick Okuda, BOE; Mark Gold, Heal the Bay; Rita Robinson, BOS, Council President Eric Garcetti; Shahram Kharaghani, Wing Tam, BOS-WPD.

Download Oros Green Street info sheet (click on above image).