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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Unloved piece of Echo Park Lake demolished

Pump house demolished. Photo by Stephen Roullier

A heavy-duty construction shovel today demolished the cinder-block pump house on the north end of Echo Park Lake as part of an $85-million lake clean up project. Few if any residents objected when city engineers announced that the pump house, erected at the tip of a peninsula that juts into the lake, would be torn down and relocated to a new location on the south end of the lake. The frequently tagged building, which contained mechanical equipment, marred a vista of the lake and occupied a spot that once served as the original home of the Lady of the Lake, a 1930s Art Deco-style statue that was removed after it had been heavily damaged.  After the Lady of the Lake was restored in the late 1990s, the statue had to be located on the east side of the lake since the pump house had taken its place.

“I’ve been looking forward to the day that abomination was torn down,” said Stephen Roullier, who took photos of the  pump house being torn down. “The new pump house is near the south east corner – a much better location.”

Now, with the pump house gone, the stage is set for the Lady of the Lake to return to her original and prominent lake front spot.  The before-and-after images below depict how the peninsula will change with the removal of the pump house and return of the Lady of the Lake. Roullier, who snapped the demolition photo above, also took a  photo in 1974 that shows what the Lady of Lake looked like in its original location.

pumphouseRenderings from City of Los Angeles

7 comments

  1. Aw…that’s where my friends and I would gather to watch the fireworks during the Lotus Festival.

  2. Good Riddance, it was ugly

  3. I ask: It was my understanding that they were eliminating the aeration fountain as part of this project, instead relying on the large amount of wetlands they will be putting in to handle that. If they will no longer have the aeration fountain, which is what the pump house was pumping, then why do they need to relocate the pump house? That doesn’t make sense. There shouldn’t be any need for a pump house any more.

    • If it’s correct that the “aeration fountain” will no longer be part of the project, that is wonderful. The base of the fountain that the city installed the last time work was done on the lake appeared to be made out of white plastic plumbing pipes. The whole thing couldn’t have been uglier. (Though I never checked, I couldn’t imagine that the city would have installed such an eyesore in fancier parts of town.).

  4. Good riddence, and good ques — a lake like EP needs aeration for water, fowl and aquatic/fish health or it will be one, big stagnant pond, which is what it was before the bubbler system and fountains went in. The water was extremely clear compared to what it was — we used to joke that if you fell in you were doomed to die by toxic waters…not too far from reality.

  5. While I can’t address all the technical details, it’s my understanding that the fountain has been rebuilt and will function as before, and that lights have been added. In addition, there’s a system in place for circulating water through the wetlands and other parts of the lake.

  6. tikis and easter island heads should be added and water should be dancing with colors

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