Elmer Avenue Neighborhood

Location: 7700 block of Elmer Avenue, Los Angeles, CA

The Elmer Avenue Neighborhood retrofit project incorporates stormwater capture technologies that provide multiple benefits on both private and public property. The homes that line the street were retrofitted with bioswales, rain barrels, drought tolerant planting palettes, and permeable pavers, while the public street incorporated under-street infiltration galleries and catch basins. Taken together, these strategies turned Elmer Avenue into a multi-benefit “green street” project that manages runoff from 40 acres of residential area. The benefits included reducing street flooding during storm events, preventing polluted runoff from reaching the LA River and eventually the ocean, enhancing the community through increased green space and improved infrastructure, recharging 16 acre-feet of groundwater each year that would otherwise go down the storm drain, and promoting awareness of water conservation and watershed connections. Phase II of the Elmer Avenue project, Elmer Avenue Paseo, converted a concrete alleyway into a bioswale that can capture stormwater runoff from an additional 20-acre upstream area and infiltrate it into the ground below. In addition to water management benefits, this project created a new walking path for the community to enhance connectivity and served as a place for community artwork involving local students.

©Council for Watershed Health

For more information on this neighborhood project, please visit: https://www.watershedhealth.org/living-laboratories