Parks and Environment

Additional Graffiti Clean Up Services Coming to Rowland Heights and Hacienda Heights

Graffiti cleanup services will soon be offered in the communities of Rowland Heights and Hacienda Heights seven days a week thanks to a recent expansion of community services approved after a request by Supervisor Don Knabe.

Currently, graffiti cleanup crews operate in the two communities during weekdays only.

Today’s approval will now extend that coverage to include Saturdays and Sundays. Although crews will focus efforts on graffiti near schools, parks and major intersections, the crews will also be available to respond to individual service calls.

This service extension will go a long way to removing graffiti in these communities, said Supervisor Knabe. By focusing on rapid cleanup of these crimes, I confident we will take a positive step forward to curbing the escalation of graffiti incidents.

For graffiti removal in the unincorporated areas of the Los Angeles County, including Hacienda Heights and Rowland Heights, anyone can contact the County’s Graffiti Hotline at (800) 675-4357.

The graffiti removal hotline is available with live operators 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Los Angeles County Adopts Green Building Construction Plan

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors adopted a series of changes this week to building design policies for County construction projects. The new standards will require all new County buildings over 10,000 square feet to meet strict sustainability guidelines set by the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program.

Among the sustainability rules adopted by the Board are requirements that buildings commissioned by the County include drought-resistant landscaping, water use efficiencies, natural indoor lighting and recycled construction materials whenever appropriate. The County Data Center, currently under construction in the Fourth District on the campus of Rancho Los Amigos National Rehabilitation Center, was designed to meet the new standards and will be the first County facility to apply for LEED certification once construction is complete.

This is an opportunity for Los Angeles County to be a leader in sustainable construction. We already own or operate over 5,000 buildings, from animal shelters to office buildings, to fire stations and we are building dozens of new facilities every year, said Supervisor Don Knabe. Using sustainable design techniques in the construction of these buildings will have an important impact in reducing the use of resources needed to operate our facilities.

The new construction policies adopted this week are not the only changes the County has made in the area of sustainable operations recently. The use of recycled water for landscape irrigation is already occurring at several County parks and golf courses. At Supervisor Knabe’s direction, the Department of Public Works is currently investigating ways to expand uses of recycled water for other purposes across the County.

County Develops New Job Opportunities for Military Veterans

The County of Los Angeles plans to assist local military veterans with employment opportunities under a plan developed by Supervisors Don Knabe and Michael D. Antonovich.

The program, approved today by the Board of Supervisors, directs County departments to begin internship programs for Veterans including employment outreach, new hiring protocols and education opportunities.

As part of this effort to provide Veterans with employment opportunities within the County, the Chief Administrative Office and Director of Personnel will develop training classes appropriate for Veterans, modify job classifications where needed, and give work experience credit where appropriate for previous military service and training.

There is a disproportionate unemployment rate in our region for recently discharged Veterans, said Knabe.

It is my hope that this program will connect these men and women and their useful skills with employment opportunities within Los Angeles County.

South Coast Botanic Garden to be Renovated

The South Coast Botanic Garden on the Palos Verdes Peninsula will receive several refurbishments as part of a General Improvements Project that was approved by the Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Don Knabe announced today.

The renovation project will include the installation of a new Japanese Garden trellis; replacement of a chain link fence with tubular black steel fencing; replacement of the termite-infested sections of the trellis at the main entry to the Francis Young Hall; installation of new lighting; installation of Americans with Disability Act (ADA) compliant sidewalk; installation of new turf in three meadow areas; and various other site improvements.

The total cost of the refurbishments at the South Coast Botanic Garden will be approximately $622,429, and funds for the project will come from the Safe Neighborhood Parks Proposition A of 1996.

The project is estimated to be completed within 210 working days, and the required construction should result in minimal disruption of services. Signs that inform the public of any upcoming work will be posted at each site 30 days prior to the start of construction.

Los Angeles County Waives Park Fees for Veterans and Military Personnel

In honor of Veterans Day, admission fees for the County Arboreta and Botanical Gardens are being waived as well as vehicle entrance fees to regional park facilities from November 10 through November 17, 2006. The motion, introduced by Supervisor Don Knabe, was unanimously approved by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors.

As Veterans Day approaches, it is important that we recognize the many contributions that Veterans have made for our great County over the years, said Knabe. We owe them many freedoms that we have today and they truly deserve the honor and respect of their fellow Americans.

All Veterans, military personnel and their immediate families are invited to visit the following Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation facilities from November 10 through November 17, 2006:

Frank G. Bonelli Regional Park

120 Via Verde Drive

San Dimas

(909) 599-8411

Castaic Lake Recreation Area

32132 Castaic Lake Drive


(661) 257-4050

Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area

4100 North La Cienega Boulevard

Los Angeles

(323) 298-3660

Santa Fe Dam Regional Park

15501 East Arrow Highway


(626) 334-1065

Schabarum Park

17250 East Colima Road

Rowland Heights

(626) 854-5560

Whittier Narrows Regional Recreation Area

750 South Santa Anita Avenue

South El Monte

(626) 575-5526

Arboretum of Los Angeles County

301 North Baldwin Avenue


(626) 821-3212

Descanso Gardens

1418 Descanso Drive

La Canada Flintridge

(818) 952-4400

South Coast Botanic Garden

26300 Crenshaw Boulevard

Palos Verdes Peninsula

(310) 544-6815

Virginia Robinson Gardens

(310) 276-5367

By appointment only

Improvements Completed at Carolyn Rosas Park in Rowland Heights

Supervisor Knabe announced recently that the improvement project that had been taking place at Carolyn Rosas Park in Rowland Heights is now complete.

The refurbishment which began in November of 2005 was completed within the budget and timeline required of the contractor.

The project included improvements to the existing park’s community building to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), including upgrades to the restroom and repairs to the interior doors, walls and floor, and to accommodate a computer lab within the community building were provided.

In addition, the project included various improvements to the park site, including repairs to the parking lot, replacement of concrete walkways and the installation of new picnic shelters, barbeque braziers, drinking fountains and connective pathways to improve ADA access. Security lights throughout the park were also replaced.

"I am excited that these improvements are finally complete," said Supervisor Knabe. "The upgrades to this park will benefit this community for many years to come."

Cerritos Regional Park to Receive Renovation Overhaul

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has approved a contract that will provide significant improvements and renovations at Cerritos Regional Park, Supervisor Don Knabe announced today.

The project which is scheduled to begin on July 24, 2006, has been split into two phases. Phase I will include the following major refurbishments: renovation of 35 acres of turf, cobblestone treatment on two deteriorated slopes, waterproofing of selected exterior gymnasium walls, creation of new parking, installation of new park lighting, and the relocation of trees. Phase II includes the construction of an ADA accessible restroom, additional park lighting, and other park improvements.

The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works will oversee the project which has a total budget of $12,077,000. Public Works will be working with Los Angeles Engineering, Inc., the firm that was awarded the construction contract, to carry out the project, and the department’s estimated date of completion is June 18, 2007.

This project is about making a reinvestment in our community, said Supervisor Knabe. These park improvements will not only increase the quality of life for the residents of Cerritos, but also the residents of the surrounding communities that utilize this park.

The project will be phased to limit the impact on park use, and the park will remain open during construction. Although park space will be reduced, current County services and projects at the park will not be negatively impacted.

Harbor Boulevard Wildlife Underpass Completed in La Habra Heights

Supervisor Don Knabe announced today that the Harbor Boulevard Wildlife Underpass in the La Habra Heights is now complete. Supervisor Knabe will participate in a dedication ceremony and press conference at the site on Thursday, June 1st at 11:00 a.m.

Harbor Boulevard is a major thoroughfare that connects Orange and Los Angeles Counties. Because of the high volume of vehicle traffic, it was necessary to provide a crossing that could both protect the wildlife while not inhibiting the traffic flow.

Construction began in September 2005, and consists of an 18 foot high by 20 foot wide tunnel that is approximately 160 feet long built directly underneath Harbor Boulevard. The project was a collaboration of Supervisor Don Knabe, the Habitat Authority and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works.

This underpass will make crossing Harbor Boulevard safer for not only our local wildlife, but for motorists as well, said Supervisor Knabe. We are honored to have been a part of the team bringing this solution to this wildlife corridor, and we are looking forward to the long-term benefits for both local residents and for wildlife in the area.

Members of media are welcome to attend this event. The underpass is located on the Westside of Harbor Boulevard, North of Fullerton Road; there will be no parking on the Eastside of Harbor Boulevard. Sheriffs and Rangers will be on hand to guide traffic.

Wetlands to be Developed in Long Beach

Supervisor Don Knabe announced recently that the Board of Supervisors approved plans for the construction of treatment wetlands and public use open space that will greatly benefit the community. The project is located in the Dominguez Gap Spreading Grounds east and west basins in the City of Long Beach.

The Dominguez Gap was identified in the 1996 Los Angeles River Master Plan as one of five sites that would provide flood management, water quality, environmental enhancements, and recreational and educational improvements. In 2001, a feasibility study for the project was completed by the Los Angeles County Flood Control District.

During the process, the District worked to gather input and support from a large and diverse group of stakeholders. The supporters of this project include: the City of Long Beach, the California Coastal Conservancy, the San Gabriel and Lower Los Angeles Rivers and Mountains Conservancy, along with residents in the area.

Construction will consist of developing extensive treatment wetlands in the east basin, enhancing the quality of water recharged in the west basin, providing public use open space along both basins with passive recreational features including trails, shade structures, and interpretive signage, and installing trash removal devices at major storm drain outlets. Work on the project is scheduled to begin August 2006 and should be finished in March 2007. Construction is not expected to disrupt traffic and local access in the area.

This project is an integral part of the Los Angeles River Master Plan, said Supervisor Knabe. This will not only create a wetland habitat in the Dominguez Gap, but it will also be a significant point of interest along the Los Angles River greenway.

Steinmetz Park Play Areas to be Renovated

Steinmetz Park in Hacienda Heights is among 12 parks throughout Los Angeles County that will have their play areas renovated as approved by the Board of Supervisors, Supervisor Don Knabe announced today.

The renovations will include the replacement of the old, non-compliant play equipment and surfacing with new play equipment and modern surfacing designed to reduce the stress of impacts. The new play area improvements will meet all applicable State laws including Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessibility.

The cost of these renovations at Steinmetz Park will be approximately $450,000, with $315,000 coming from Proposition 12 funds and the remaining $135,000 will come form Proposition A funds.

These are necessary renovations that will provide our parks with new play equipment and low-impact surfacing, said Supervisor Knabe. Our children deserve to go parks that have both safe and modern playground equipment.