Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Teamwork Builds A Community's Walking Path

Among those present at the dedication of the Wiseburn Walking Path on Sept. 9, 2017, were
(from left) Ed Siribohdi, senior landscape architect in the Caltrans District 7 Office of
Maintenance Engineering; Paul Lamond, senior right of way agent in the District 7 Division
of Right of Way; Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas; and District 7 Chief
Deputy Director Shirley Choate.
For years, residents in the Wiseburn community near I-405 (San Diego Freeway) in Los Angeles County wished for more recreational amenities in their neighborhood. Their wish came true in 2017 on land owned by Caltrans.

A walking path was developed for community use under a 10-year lease by Caltrans to the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation.

Caltrans staff cooperated in several key areas with the Department of Parks and Recreation to make the vision a reality.

The Wiseburn Walking Path opened in September with a dedication ceremony attended by representatives of Caltrans, the County of Los Angeles and other agencies and organizations, and community members. 

Reclaimed water is used for irrigation along the pedestrian path, thanks
to a recycled water line Caltrans extended.
The Wiseburn Walking Path runs west of South La Cienega Boulevard from 130th Street to 139th Street.

The pedestrian path, made of decomposed gravel, is approximately three-quarters of a mile in length. It has a connection at 135th Street to the city of Hawthorne’s Glasgow Park, giving people an opportunity for combined use and longer walks.

The walking path is equipped with several fitness zone areas with exercise equipment, benches, security lighting and dog waste stations for the convenience of dog owners.

The trail is planted with native and drought-tolerant plant species in an effort to reduce watering. Colorful low-growing accent plant materials highlight the fitness zone areas.

Security lighting is solar powered to reduce energy consumption and support the goal of using renewable energy sources in county projects. Reclaimed water is used for irrigation.

Caltrans staff worked in a productive partnership with the county Department of Parks and Recreation. Ed Siribohdi, Caltrans senior landscape architect, and Toby MacElroy, Caltrans landscape associate, both in the District 7 Office of Maintenance Engineering, were involved in coordination from the planning stage, along with Paul Lamond from District 7 Division of Right of Way.

The Wiseburn Walking Path runs west of South La Cienega
Boulevard from 130th Street to 139th Street, parallel to 
I-405 (San Diego Freeway) in Los Angeles County. It is
about three-quarters of a mile in length.

Lamond and Gary George, both from the Division of Right of Way, drafted the lease agreement so the community could use the space.

During the last phase of construction, District 7 Division of Construction and Division of Maintenance helped in a various ways -- cleaning an adjacent Caltrans slope behind the walking path, extending a recycled water line for irrigation, and planting drought-tolerant plants.

In the Division of Construction, Gilbert Trujillo, Celia Banuelos and Leo Avila were instrumental in extending the recycled water line and irrigating the new planting. A smart controller was implemented to conserve water.

Caltrans’ Torrance Maintenance crew, along with contractor Sierra Landscape, assisted in cleaning the adjacent Caltrans area and planting the slope with drought tolerant plants.

“The successful Wiseburn Walking Path project took the team almost seven years, from planning to the agreement process and then construction,” Siribohdi said. He commended several individuals who were involved from start to finish, including the job superintendent for the project, Dore Burry of the Los Angeles Conservation Corps; the designer of the walking path, Lacey Withers of Withers & Sangren Landscape Architecture; and Andy Lopez with the Department of Parks and Recreation.