Carren's Pitch

Life by Design

It would be wonderful to revive a long forgotten and neglected river, but can Los Angeles afford it? Costs are shooting up. Here's a look. 

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Text by: Carren Jao
Text by: Carren Jao
Edited by: Yosuke Kitazawa
Published: 25 Mar 2015, KCET


Los Angeles came out in full support of a $1-billion plan to restore 11 miles of the Los Angeles River, but when the price tag increases, will the city still be so eager to take on the burden?

Over two meetings, the city's Arts, Parks, Health, Aging and Recreation (APHAR) committee hashed out the issue of the restoration's increased costs. Initially estimated to cost at $1.03 billion, Alternative 20 will now reportedly cost a total of $1.36 billion. With that price tag increase also comes an increase in the city's cost share to at most $1.183 billion (or about 87 percent of total cost). Another option is being explored where the city's share is at $965 million (or 71 percent of total cost). KCET previously reported on this real possibility, which has unfortunately come true.

"This has taken a lot of twists and turns over the past few months," remarked Councilman Mitch O'Farrell during the latest APHAR meeting on the issue this week. "We want the best result here in the 11-mile stretch we've been focused on so diligently, but we also want it to be within reasonable cost, not at the expense of everything we do in the city." [read more]

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