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Recycled sewage is helping grass grow at Downtown’s Cornfield Park

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The grass has not grown fast enough for the park to open on time

Sure, it rained today, but for much of the time that new grass at the Los Angeles State Historic Park (a.k.a Cornfield Park) near Chinatown has been trying to grow, it’s been hot and dry thanks to the stubborn drought plaguing Southern California. In the interest of having established green tufts for visitors to enjoy, the open for the oft-delayed project was recently pushed back to January 2017.

For the past few months, the water for greening up the grounds has been come from an interesting source: recycled sewage from the new Los Angeles-Glendale Water Reclamation Facility in Glendale, officials tell the Downtown News. (Thanks, Glendale!)

The reclaimed water undergoes an intense filtration process before coming to the park, and while it’s definitely not for drinking, it is able to be used for flushing toilets or, say, watering park grass.

Using three trucks making multiple trips a day, the State Parks department has brought between 60,000 and 80,000 gallons of water a day into the park for irrigation, focusing now on the grass in the heart of the park, and then, later in the fall, shifting to the plant life on the park’s fringes. (The trucks are temporary; eventually the park will have its own permanent water line.)

The park, when complete, will feature wetlands on its northern end, a visitors center, and a parking lot with permeable paving to help collect rainwater. The $20-million upgrade has been in the works since the park closed in the spring of 2014.

Los Angeles State Historic Park

1245 North Spring Street, , CA 90012 Visit Website