FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # CM: 052616
Next Phase of Colorado Lagoon Restoration to Begin in September
On Tuesday, May 24, the Long Beach City Council approved the next phase in the Colorado Lagoon’s restoration, to further enhance the ecological value of the Lagoon through the creation of additional aquatic resources.
“The Colorado Lagoon Restoration Project truly demonstrates what can be achieved through strong partnerships with residents, State and Federal agencies, elected officials and community groups like the Friends of Colorado Lagoon,” said Mayor Robert Garcia.
The creation of new intertidal and shallow subtidal habitat and eelgrass beds will provide foraging for local birds at one of Southern California’s last remaining coastal lagoons.
“The Lagoon is a true ecological landmark that benefits not just residents and visitors, but a wide diversity of flora and fauna that continues to thrive more than ever due to the investments and improvements we have made at this special Long Beach treasure,” said Councilwoman Suzie Price.
The restoration project will establish new aquatic resources and essential fish habitat through balanced hydraulic dredging and filling of the Lagoon site. The north shore and eastern shoreline will be actively revegetated using a palette of California native plant species.
The floating pier and footbridge will be extended by 150 feet to span the expanded subtidal areas. The extension will require 16 new piles, and pile driving during construction. The pier will be repainted, and the stairs will be replaced with ADA-compliant ramps.
The asphalt access road will be replaced with an ADA-compliant pedestrian walking trail and vegetated bioswale designed to capture runoff from the golf course. The new trail entrance will feature native vegetation, benches, and bike racks.
Construction is scheduled to begin in September 2016 and will build upon previous improvements in 2010 and 2012. Those improvements prevented new contaminants from entering the Lagoon and removed years of contaminated sediment, which had contributed to degraded water quality.
Those efforts, funded by numerous granting partners, have led to remarkably improved water quality. Heal the Bay’s most recent Annual Beach Report Card, released today, gave the Colorado Lagoon and Alamitos Bay five “A” grades with one “B” grade during dry weather.
The final component of the approved master restoration plan for the Lagoon includes the daylighting of the underground culvert that connects the Lagoon to Marine Stadium to create a more natural vegetated channel that will further improve tidal exchange and create new aquatic resources. The City is working closely with its State and Federal Agency partners, as well as the Port of Long Beach, to get the open channel concept funded and constructed.