As the City’s imported water supply becomes more critical, so does the need to expand our local, sustainable water resources, including water recycling. Water recycling offers a reliable, economically feasible, and environmentally sensitive way to augment the city's water supplies. Recycling programs treat wastewater so that it can be used safely for irrigation and industrial purposes, groundwater replenishment, as a barrier against seawater intrusion, and for other beneficial environmental uses.

As a result, new recycled water projects and the expansion of existing projects are in various stages of planning, design, or construction. Below is a link to the Executive Summary of the Recycled Water Master Planning document followed by a chronological history of LADWP recycling projects currently in operation, as well as new projects in which construction is planned or already underway.

Recycled Water Master Planning – Executive Summary

Second Dominguez Gap Connection Project

The Second Dominguez Gap Connection is an important LADWP water infrastructure project located in Wilmington that uses recycled water to act as a barrier against seawater intrusion. The project will install 3,000 feet of 24-inch diameter ductile iron purple pipe (which we use in all of our recycled water projects) to feed the Dominguez seawater barrier. This project is being done in partnership with the Water Replenishment District of Southern California (WRD) and the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works (LACDPW). It represents another important step in LADWP’s continuing effort to develop L.A.’s local water supplies.

Second Dominguez Gap Connection Fact Sheet

Garber Street Recycled Water Tank Project

The Garber Street Recycled Water Tank Project will improve overall capacity and reliability of recycled water in the San Fernando Valley by providing 1 million gallons of recycled water storage. This final step will complete the existing recycled water system that has been serving non-potable reuse customers – like the Hansen Dam Golf Course - since 2015. Upon completion of this project, system capacity will be increased to 5,600 gallons per minute (gpm).

More information on the Garber Street Recycled Water Tank Project

Pershing Drive Recycled Water Pipeline (2017)

LADWP partnered with the Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) and the Los Angeles Department of Public Works, Bureau of Sanitation (LASAN) to provide high-quality recycled water to LAX.

LADWP will construct a recycled water pipeline, via “purple pipeline,” between Hyperion and LAX, and in turn, LAWA will construct pipeline within the airport to complete the connection.

Recycled water use at LAX is expected to offset approximately 325 million gallons or 1,000 acre-feet of drinking water per year, enough water to supply 3,000 households for a year.

More information on the Pershing Drive Recycled Water Pipeline

Machado Lake Pipeline Project (2016)

The Machado Lake Pipeline Project is an important water infrastructure investment that will bring recycled water to the local parks, oil refineries, and golf courses in the Harbor area for uses such as landscape irrigation and industrial processes. The project will install approximately 3,400 feet of pipeline to bring recycled water from the Terminal Island Water Reclamation Plant. The project will supply up to 4.2 billion gallons per year of recycled water, via “purple pipeline,” to customers including Harbor Regional Park, Machado Lake, and the Dominguez Gap Barrier.

More information on the Machado Lake Pipeline Project

Downtown-Elysian Park Water Recycling Projects (Planned for 2016)

The Elysian Park-Downtown Water Recycling Projects (WRPs) will supply approximately 2,741 acre-feet per year (AFY) of recycled water for irrigation and industrial uses to Elysian Park, Downtown Los Angeles, Chinatown, Exposition Park, Boyle Heights, and Southeast Los Angeles.

Project features will include construction of a two million gallon tank at Elysian Park, 97,300 linear feet (18 miles) of 16-inch recycled water pipeline (purple pipe), construction of two 3,000 gallon per minute (GPM) pump stations, and a 30,000 gallon forebay tank to provide a potable backup to the recycled water system.

Griffith Park South Water Recycling Project (2015)

The Griffith Park South Water Recycling Project (GPSWRP) will extend the existing recycled water system to the southern facilities of Griffith Park to increase recycled water supply and offset the demand of potable water in Central Los Angeles. LADWP has identified Roosevelt Golf Course as a prime customer for recycled water as the golf course currently uses potable water for irrigation. The GPSWRP will provide 370 AFY (120.56 million gallons per year) of recycled water used for irrigation at the Roosevelt Golf Course and future areas of expansion within Griffith Park.

More information on the Griffith Park South Water Recycling Project

Taylor Yard Project (2009)

Photo of Taylor Yard playground

Since 2009, the LADWP has delivered as much as 75 AFY of recycled water to irrigate Rio de Los Angeles State Park on the east side of the Los Angeles River in Cypress Park. Not only does recycled water maintain the native plants, it is used to irrigate this once former rail yard that is now a popular recreational are of sports fields, a playground, and hiking trails.

The Taylor Yard project will also provide recycled water to irrigate a new Los Angeles Community College campus, the Taylor Yard Innovation Campus, and a new Los Angeles Unified School District campus.

Sepulveda Basin Water Recycling Project (2008)

LADWP Crew members installing recycled water purple pipe

This project encompasses three golf courses and three parks. The City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks uses over 1,600 acre-feet of recycled water per year to keep the Sepulveda Basin Recreational Area green. LADWP Water District crews completed the construction to connect the Encino and Balboa Golf Courses in July 2008. On 68 acres in the northwest corner of this recreational area, the Sepulveda Basin Sports Complex was constructed using voter-allocated funds for parks and recreation. The complex has a soccer field and four softball fields. LADWP crews are working to extend the recycled water mainline to this facility by June 2017. When connected to recycled water, the facility will save over 150 AFY of potable water supplies.

Hansen Area Water Recycling Project (2008)

Photo of Hansen Recycling water 7 million gallon tank wall being constructed

A 54-inch pipeline delivers recycled water from the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in the Sepulveda Basin to the Valley Generation Station (VGS) in the east San Fernando Valley. Unlike other projects, the recycled water at VGS is used in the cooling towers for energy production. This use saves enough potable water to serve 4,000 families for one year. Pictured is the 7-million gallon Hansen tank constructed at VGS for recycled water storage.

Harbor Water Recycling Project (2006)

36" inch pipe being placed by horizontal directional drilling

The Terminal Island Water Reclamation Plant produces highly treated recycled water that goes through microfiltration and reverse osmosis before injection into the seawater intrusion barrier which is a hydraulic barrier that prevents ocean water from entering the groundwater basin saving approximately 4,000 AFY of potable water supplies.

Pipeline construction for the Harbor Project included horizontal directional drilling under the Port of Los Angeles with 3,800 feet of 36-inch pipeline.

Westside Water Recycling Project (1997) 

Star shaped water fountain utilizing recycled water

Meandering along the perimeter of the Los Angeles International Airport, the Westside Water Recycling Project pipeline began using recycled water from the Edward C. Little Water Recycling Facility in 1997. This project terminates in the Playa Vista Development, the LADWP’s first residential use of recycled water. Other customers on the line are the Los Angeles Airport, Loyola Marymount University, Westchester Park and Golf Course, Carl Neilson Youth Park, and street medians.

Recycled water is used for landscape irrigation at the Metro Condominiums and Crescent Park one of many condominium complexes and parks in the Playa Vista Development.

Los Angeles Greenbelt Project (1992)

Dedicated in 1992, the Greenbelt Project was an extension of the Griffith Park Project and brings recycled water from the Los Angeles/Glendale Plant to Forest Lawn Memorial Park-Hollywood Hills, Mt. Sinai Memorial Park, Lakeside Golf Course, and Universal Studios. The project delivers about 700 AFY of recycled water.

Wildlife Preserve and Lake Balboa at the Sepulveda Recreational Facility (1992)

View of Lake Balboa seen from water edge with Cherry Blossom Blooming tree to the left

One of the finest refuges of its kind and home to over 200 species of birds, the Wildlife Preserve in the Sepulveda Recreational Facility (adjacent to the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant) was filled with recycled water in 1992.

Still another water feature in the Sepulveda Recreational Facility is Lake Balboa, a 27-acre flow-through lake that empties to the Los Angeles River. Lake Balboa uses about 15 million gallons of recycled water per day and supports recreational activities such as fishing, boating, jogging, and walking.





Japanese Garden at Tillman Water Reclamation Plant (1984)

View of pond with tree in background and white petal flowers in foreground

The Japanese Garden located at the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in Van Nuys is a little-known oasis existing in the middle of the busy San Fernando Valley. The recycled water in the Japanese Garden, which is used for irrigation, a decorative lake, and a stream, was dedicated in 1984 to serve as a public showcase for the use of recycled water. It attracts more than 10,000 visitors per year.

Griffith Park Project (1979)

It all began in 1979 when the LADWP began irrigating two golf courses—Wilson and Harding—in Griffith Park with recycled water from the Los Angeles-Glendale Water Reclamation Plant, utilizing approximately 900 AFY. The City of Glendale also receives their recycled water from the Los Angeles-Glendale Plant.