ASF Logo

Arroyo Seco Foundation

News of the Arroyo


South Pasadena Sewer Issues


Public Works Update




<b>December 10, 2015</b> - Twelve South Pasaena sewer spills have reached the Arroyo Seco and the LA River. An overhaul of the SoPas sewer system is now underway.


Bill Glazier



Sewer System

In wake of facing hefty fines by state and federal regulators for numerous raw-sewage spills in recent years, a complete overhaul of the City of South Pasadena sewer system is now underway. Records show that between 2007 and early 2011, 26 spills were reported to the governing bodies, indicating that 121,040 gallons of untreated wastewater had been released, including approximately 85,575 gallons reaching the Arroyo Seco and Los Angeles River.
“It looks like 12 of these spills ended up in the Arroyo Seco and/or LA River and two closed local beaches,” Bill Kelly, a former member of South Pasadena’s Natural Resources and Environmental Commission, wrote in an e-mail. “I would expect that along with major fines, the state would be requiring a major overhaul of sewer system.”

A judgment against the city for a sewer overflow, much of which made its way into the ocean in Long Beach, forced a major overhaul of the city’s sewer system.

“We’ve obviously had failures over the years as a result of our aging infrastructure,” said Gonzalez. “We have finished the first phase of reconstruction effort, and now we’re about to start the second phase to complete about 80 percent of the pipes that needed to be fixed. That is a significant improvement. If we make the sewer system improvements and water system improvements in the next three to five years, I can honestly say our infrastructure, as far as water and sewer, will be in a more reliable shape.”

Gonzalez said the city has been “very proactive in recent years in addressing the infrastructure, “but when you have more than $100 million worth of capital improvement needs, it doesn’t happen over night,” he stressed.




Arroyo Seco Foundation, PO Box 91622, Pasadena, CA 91109-1622 (323) 405-7326