PALMDALE – Local, county and state officials gathered today to celebrate the ribbon cutting for the Upper Amargosa Creek Recharge project near the California Aqueduct at 25th St. West and Elizabeth Lake Road.
The $17 million dollar project, a collaborative effort between the City of Palmdale, Palmdale Water District, Antelope Valley-East Kern Water Agency and the Los Angeles County Water Districts, pipes State Water Project water from the California Aqueduct to a series of recharge ponds where the water percolates through the ground into the aquifer beneath.
The location is a natural recharge basin for the area that allows water to seep into the ground at a rate of 1.5 feet a day to increase the groundwater table.
In addition to improving the regional water resource supply, it will promote further preservation of the Amargosa Creek corridor and provide the community with a nature park to enjoy.
Pathways weave through the newly created nature park and around the recharge basins among specific plant species adapted to the desert environment. At strategic locations along the path, education kiosks and interpretive plaques provide information on the desert environment, urban runoff, watershed processes, and the recharge facilities.
Additionally, future shade covers and picnic tables located throughout the park will invite community members to sit down, relax, and enjoy their natural surroundings.
In the future, recycled water from the Palmdale wastewater treatment plant will also be piped to the recharged basins to further help feed the aquifer.
Guest speakers included Palmdale Mayor Steve Hofbauer, Mayor Pro Tem Richard Loa, Councilmember Austin Bishop, State Senator Scott Wilk, Assemblyman Tom Lackey, Adam Ariki of Los Angeles County Waterworks, Vic Nguyen of the California Department of Water Resources, Palmdale Water District Director Vincent Dino, and AVEK General Manager Dwayne Chisam.
“Above and beyond the magnitude and importance of this project, it is very impressive to see how so many different agencies worked together on what was often a complicated and tricky process,” Hofbauer said. “Kudos to the staff and leadership of these agencies, as well as the contractors who came together to make this important project a reality.”