Project Background

As approved by the Los Angeles City Council on December 11, 2012, LADWP is preparing to install a floating cover on the open water surface of the existing Elysian Reservoir just north of Downtown Los Angeles. This project will help comply with two United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) water quality regulations.

Addressing risks from microbial pathogens, and disinfectants and/or disinfection byproducts, S2DDBPR requires compliance with new disinfection byproduct standards by April 1, 2012. A compliance extension of two years, to April 1, 2014, is allowed for agencies needing to construct new facilities.

Two options are allowed for open water reservoirs: (1) covered storage, or (2) a filtration plant at the outlet of the open reservoir. A compliance plan for Elysian Reservoir was approved by the California Department of Public Health, now called the State Water Resources Control Board – Division of Drinking Water.

In order to meet these two regulations, the LADWP will do the following:

  • Switch disinfectants from chlorine to chloramines, which was completed in Spring 2014.
  • Remove Elysian Reservoir from service by February 2016 and install a floating cover over the reservoir to be in compliance with the LT2ESWTR.

Scope of Project

A cover will be installed over the entire water surface of the 55-million gallon Elysian Reservoir. The cover material will be a polyethylene synthetic rubber similar to Hypalon (trademark) and anchored to the edge of the reservoir basin above the top water elevation. Larger than the reservoir surface, the cover will float on the water surface, adjusting as needed to the changing water levels. In order for the floating cover to operate more efficiently, protruding structures within the basin will be removed and replaced with underground equipment. In addition, the reservoir liner will be replaced, and other supporting facilities and site improvements will be made. Larger pipes to supply and bypass the reservoir are also needed to meet current and future flow demands. This construction will enhance infrastructure reliability as it replaces the riveted steel pipes fromthe 1940’s.

The project requires a minimal amount of ground disturbance and a relatively low level of construction activity. It is the most economical means of covering the water supply to achieve water quality compliance.

Project cost for the floating cover is approximately $18.2 million. Construction is anticipated to last two and a half years.

Project Schedule

Final EIR: Completed December 2012 
Bid Advertisement: December 2014 – March 2015 
Notice to Proceed: September 2015 
Groundbreaking: November 2015 
End of Construction: Spring 2018

Community Impact

For project updates, please read the Elysian Reservoir Water Quality Improvement Project Update (August 19, 2016) below.

LADWP Contact Information

Helen Grace Olivares, Project Manager, (213) 367-5263, [email protected] 
Jason Stinnett, Community Relations, (213) 367-3803, [email protected]

Updated August 22, 2016