WASHINGTON, D.C. – March 12, 2020 – The Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI) announced today that the Albion Riverside Park, located in Los Angeles, California, is the recent recipient of the Envision® Gold award for sustainable infrastructure. To earn Envision Gold, a project must demonstrate that it delivers a heightened range of environmental, social, and economic benefits to the host and affected communities.
The Albion Riverside Park is a 10.6-acre site located adjacent to the Los Angeles River in the neighborhood of Lincoln Heights. For this project, 6 acres of land adjacent to the original park were acquired, having been previously used for industrial purposes such as ice cream manufacturing, dairy storage and distribution, metal pipe manufacturing, brewery operations, and automotive repair. After decades of industrial use, the soil on the expansion site was significantly contaminated. The contaminated soil was removed and remediated to make the site safe for public use.
The overall goal of the Albion Riverside Park project was to increase and enhance open space and recreational opportunities along the Los Angeles River, and implement stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs) that improve the water quality of stormwater runoff. The above-ground improvements result in an expanded park facility that better serves the local community, and adds to the LA River experience in Lincoln Heights.
The Albion Riverside Park project is one of several “Proposition O” projects in the city of Los Angeles. Proposition O, which was passed in 2004 with overwhelming public support, authorized the City to fund projects up to $500 million, which are designed to prevent and remove pollutants from regional waterways and the ocean, consequently protecting public safety and meeting Federal Clean Water Act regulations. This project’s park elements are also funded through Proposition 84 (the Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and Coastal Protection Bond Act of 2006) and Proposition K, the LA for Kids Program, a program designed to combat the inadequacies and decay of youth infrastructure throughout the City, as well as other funding from the City’s Department of Recreation and Parks (RAP).
“Every community deserves places that people can go for healthy recreation and to connect with the natural world,” said Mayor Garcetti. “The Albion Riverside Park is another milestone in our revitalization of the L.A. River — and I’m proud to have authored Proposition O so we can purchase properties like this and deliver projects that protect our river and improve our water supply.”
The Albion Riverside Park project is part of the LA River Revitalization Master Plan, River Improvement Overlay and the Cornfield Arroyo Seco Specific Site Plan. It accomplishes several goals and meets the needs of the community by:
- Improving water quality by significantly decreasing pollutant loads
- Creating and improving local park resources and visual linkages to the Los Angeles River
- Improving climate change adaptability
- Protecting and replenishing natural resources
- Reducing the risk of flooding during periods of high precipitation
“Turning a vacant, previously contaminated parcel of land into a public resource—all while protecting local water resources and reducing pollution—is a significant boon for the Lincoln Heights community and the city of Los Angeles more broadly,” said Melissa Peneycad, ISI’s Managing Director. “ISI is pleased to present the Envision Gold award for sustainable infrastructure to the city of Los Angeles and its project partners for the Albion Riverside Park project.”
“The Albion Riverside Park is part of the LA River Revitalization Master Plan, and part of our larger vision to expand recreational and green space in the First Council District,” stated Councilmember Cedillo. “The communities in CD1 have been cut off from the LA River for too long. Albion Park, and eventually G2, will provide our neighborhoods direct access to the river while improving water quality.”
“The Bureau of Engineering is committed to delivering sustainable and multi-benefit projects,” said City Engineer and ISI Boardmember Gary Lee Moore, PE, ENV SP. “Albion Riverside Park is an excellent example of the work we are doing to bring recreation and open space to neighborhoods that desperately need park space, increasing stormwater capture, and improving water quality.”
The Envision sustainable infrastructure framework assesses project sustainability across five categories: Quality of Life, Leadership, Resource Allocation, Natural World, and Climate and Resilience. These key areas contribute to positive social, economic, and environmental impacts on a community during the planning, design, and construction of infrastructure projects.
As project and construction manager, the city of Los Angeles Bureau of Engineering partnered with the Department of Recreation and Parks and the Bureau of Sanitation. They also worked closely with their design consultant TetraTech and their contractor Sully-Miller.