Echo Park Lake is an artificial body of water. Built by a private company, it first came into existence as a catch-basin in the 1860s and was known simply as Reservoir #4. In 1891, the City of L.A. acquired the lake and the area surrounding it and turned it into a park.
For the last two years, Los Angeles’ Echo Park Lake has been off-limits to the public, surrounded by chain-link fences and “Do Not Enter” signs. In a $45 million restoration project, the lake was closed, drained, scrubbed clean and refilled. That was a response to growing levels of pollution in the lake that violated State of California health standards. The pollution also lead to algae blooms and the dying off of the lake’s famous delicate Lotus flowers.
As efforts to drain and clean the lake were underway, workers were also busy improving the 16 acres of lush green space around the water. That work included adding new visitor features and landscaping, restoring old buildings on the property, and a general cleaning up in places that had long been neglected.
This weekend, the public got to enjoy the fruits of all that restoration labor with the reopening of Echo Park Lake. Hundreds of people came out to walk the lakefront and enjoy time with friends and family in the park areas adjacent to the Lake. Here’s what some of it looked like.
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