City of Long Beach, Army Corps of Engineers Sign Official East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Study Agreement

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breakwater awareness eventsThe United States Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) and the City of Long Beach today celebrated the signing of an agreement to conduct a feasibility study for the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration (formerly the Long Beach Breakwater Project).

Both the City of Long Beach and the Army Corps are awaiting federal funds to begin the study; however, the signing of the cost-sharing agreement is a significant milestone in the process.

“This signing ceremony is a significant step in bringing back clean recreational water quality to the East San Pedro Bay,” Mayor Bob Foster said.  This is a project that has been years in the making and will likely take several years to complete, but it could change the face of Long Beach.  I’d like to thank the Army Corps of Engineers for their readiness to work with Long Beach as we strive to restore our beaches to the thriving recreational oases that they were before.”

The feasibility study will be guided by three planning objectives:  restoration of the ecosystem in the East San Pedro Bay; improvements to recreational water quality; and increased recreational activity along the shoreline.  Only options that meet these objectives while protecting existing infrastructure, homes and operations will be considered viable.

“While this study is technical in terms of responsibilities, funding, schedules and other characteristics, its has as its basis our shared desire to take care of the people of the City of Long Beach,” said Colonel Mark Toy, United States Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District.  “The Feasibility Study will seek to protect the homes of those who reside along its shore.  It will strive to allow the City’s great maritime industry to continue to function profitability.  It will look to provide a shoreline where residents and visitors alike can relax by and in the water.  And it seeks to do all this by restoring much of the natural environment that existed in previous years.”

The feasibility study is one of the stages in a multi-year, multi-million dollar process that could potentially lead to changes as part of the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration. In June of this year, a Reconnaissance Study concluded that there is federal interest in proceeding to a Feasibility Study, which will take a minimum of four years and $8.3 million to complete.

During the feasibility phase, not a single modification to the study area will occur.  Rather, teams of scientists will evaluate opportunities to improve the ecosystem in the East San Pedro Bay as well as recreational water quality and recreational activity.  Further, subject matter experts and engineers will use the latest technology to look at wave activity in the area as part of their search for a responsible opportunity to bring waves to Long Beach beaches while maintaining protections for all existing infrastructure.

For more information on the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Project, please visit the Long Beach City Manager web page.

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