For the better part of this year, white sacks containing balls, also known as bird balls, have been arriving to Ivanhoe reservoir in Silver Lake. And next month--the exact date in June is still being decided--about 3 million of those balls will be dumped on top of the water, where they will sit for five years, according to a spokeswoman for the DWP. Similar to the nearby draining of Silver Lake Reservoir, it's all part of an effort to protect the water (the balls act as discs to shield the water from the sun and outside elements). The balls have been a sore point for some locals, with people believing the shiny balls would cause their property values to plummet. But moving on. At least there's a party! "There will be a ceremonial tossing of the bird balls into Ivanhoe," says a DWP spokeswoman. UPDATE: A reader points out this image of bird balls being poured.
Why are you balling Ivanhoe, DWP? Open-air reservoirs like Silver Lake and Ivanhoe are outdated and no longer the popular, young reservoirs they used to be. So there are two reasons for adding balls: To protect the water from “from particular matter from the sky” (i.e. bird crap) and to avoid the bromate issue that caused the draining of Silver Lake Reservoir. (Officials didn’t find the same levels of bromate in the Ivanhoe reservoir, according to the DWP.)
While these balls are in place, the city will build another underground water reservoir near Forest Lawn Cemetery, a project that’ll take 4-6 years to construct. Going forward the water in the reservoirs will only be thought of as back-up water and used in cases of emergency, i.e., fires.
Full story via the Los Angeles Times is here.
· Reservoirs, Bird Balls and Property Values Discussed in Silver Lake [Curbed LA]