Winter rains damaged the Arroyo Mocho Trail, and the lengthy drought conditions particularly affected Mocho Park on Holmes Avenue. Both the City of Livermore and the Livermore Area Recreation and Park District (LARPD) would like to inform the community about recent repair activities and the timetable to complete restorations.
Several sections of the Arroyo Mocho Trail washed out due to major storms in February; some trail segments are maintained by LARPD while others are the responsibility of the City. Regularly-scheduled quarterly maintenance, such as trimming vegetation, removing weeds and cleaning up litter, was recently completed on the City areas of the trail by the City’s contractor, Terracare. The City is also actively working to repair trails damaged by the 2017 flooding. The flood damage totaled over $4 million, and has impacted numerous trail segments. The City is seeking funding from federal and state emergency agencies; however, the work must then proceed in a certain manner with site visits and investigations by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and California Office of Emergency Services (OES) before repairs can begin.
The Arroyo Mocho Trail is surrounded by natural habitat so environmental resource agency clearances must be obtained before construction can begin unless structures are threatened. The City does have environmental permits to do annual maintenance activities in the creek, so certain interim repairs to the trail will be incorporated into this summer’s maintenance program. City staff anticipate all interim repairs will be completed by October 2017. Any other repairs must be completed under separate permits from state or federal agencies; these permits are likely to be obtained in 2018/19.
LARPD operates under the same emergency funding processes and federal and state permitting requirements as the City, so it is far from simple or quick to get repairs completed. Interim repairs of damaged portions of the trail in Robertson Park are included with this summer’s project, and it is hoped that they will also be completed by October 2017. This work will allow the trails to be used. Permanent repairs, including all the required environmental mitigations will quite likely take six to twelve months for work to begin. With regard to Mocho Park, the turf failed badly due to water restrictions during the drought. LARPD staff recently fertilized Mocho Park twice and are currently in the third round of seeding the turf in an effort to bring the park back to life. Staff have also been working on the water controls and in-ground irrigation systems as well as increasing the amount of mulched area in a portion of the park to reduce overall water use in future years.
Resident concerns have also been raised regarding the condition of the Arroyo Mocho Trail, especially near Granada High School and a convenience store, due to people not nature. This secluded trail segment is more prone to littering, graffiti and homeless issues than many other trail areas. The Livermore Police Department (LPD) actively responds to and removes homeless encampments after a required posting/noticing process. The public may report encampments to LPD on its non-emergency number at 925-371-4987 or complete the online form at http://www.cityoflivermore.net/citygov/cdd/hhs/report_homeless_activity.htm. Graffiti abatement was recently completed in the area, and the City’s Beautification Committee just completed a mural of wildflowers and wildlife on the underpass walls to discourage tagging. The public may report graffiti on public property to the Public Works Department at 925-960-8060 or join the City’s Graffiti Fighter group. Visit http://www.cityoflivermore.net/citygov/pw/public_works_divisions/maint/default.htm for the forms to report graffiti or sign up.
The City of Livermore and LARPD are both committed to maintaining a high quality of life for Livermore residents and businesses. Efforts to repair recent damage will continue at the fastest possible pace and use dollars from other entities to keep local revenues focused on public safety and parks. Affordable housing and homelessness have been reiterated as important Council issues to address. Additional city staffing and projects are focusing on these community needs. The City and LARPD will continue their successful collaboration that makes Livermore a great place to live.
Questions? Please contact Darren Greenwood, City Public Works Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or John Lawrence, LARPD Assistant General Manager, at email@example.com.