Arroyo Confluence Dropped from LA River Revitalization Priority Sites
In a Saturday June 23, 2006 meeting at the Goodwill Center near the Arroyo Seco Confluence, the technical team that is preparing the Los Angeles River Revitalization Plan announced that they have reduced the priority sites for future planning to five, and the Arroyo Confluence has been dropped from the list.
There is no more significant site on the Los Angeles River historically, culturally, environmentally or hydrologically than the Arroyo Seco Confluence, but the confluence was dropped from the list of key sites without explanation even though it meets or exceeds all the stated goals of the plan.
The five "opportunity sites" selected for further study in the plan are:
- Canoga Park
- Verdugo Industrial Green Park
- Taylor Yards
- Downtown Industrial Area
The opportunity sites were previously called "nodes," a term which connotes connections of the sort that will be vital to the revitalization of the Los Angeles River: trail connections, community connections, habitat and wildlife connections, and community connections. All these are best exemplified by the Arroyo Seco Confluence.
At the meeting, Tim Brick, Managing Director of the Arroyo Seco Foundation, criticized the planners for ignoring such linkages and taking a Band-Aid approach to river restoration rather than emphasizing the functions that will be vital to restoring the river.
In subsequent discussions, the LA River planners have made it clear that the Arroyo Seco Confluence will be incorporated as part of the Taylor Yard site, with a particular emphasis on trail connections. Still it's a setback for Arroyo Seco aficionados who know the potential of the confluence and how it can be a model for other LA River restoration efforts.