Detour Ahead: Silver Lake prepares for the big dig near the reservoirs

The Silver Lake Reservoir will be drained for 12 months during the second phase of the project.

SILVER LAKE — Those who travel around the Silver Lake and Ivanhoe reservoirs will need to prepare for detours and road closures as well as dramatic changes to the landscape in the months ahead as the LADWP prepares to start construction on a new water pipeline and temporarily drain the two reservoirs.

A community meeting and walking tour is scheduled to be  held tonight, Thursday, March 19, as the  first part of the project  is scheduled to begin on March 23 and to continue for eight to 10 months. That phase will involve the digging a trench and installing an approximately 1,600-foot-long water pipeline under West Silver Lake Drive and the temporarily drain the Ivanhoe reservoir for the removal of the black shade balls that cover its surface.

During this phase of the project, only one, northbound lane on West Silver Lake Drive will remain open between Hawick and Armstrong, and street parking will be banned. Also, southbound traffic on West Silver Lake Drive will be detoured to other streets, and pedestrians will have follow a different route to circle around this section of the reservoirs.

Once a 66-inch diameter pipeline is installed under West Silver Lake Drive, the larger Silver Lake Reservoir will be drained for about 12 months to allow for the extension of the same pipeline for about 3,000 feet across the bed of the reservoir and the construction of a new water regulation station.

The new bypass pipeline is part of a larger project that will see the Silver Lake and Ivanhoe reservoirs permanently removed from the city’s potable water system and replaced by a new reservoir buried north of Griffith Park. The project will allow the LADWP to meet  more stringent federal water quality guidelines and keep the Silver Lake and Ivanhoe reservoirs as open bodies of water.

More details about the upcoming pipeline project can be found here.


  1. Will this water be drained somewhere for actual (non-drinking but agricultural or land) use, instead of just wasted?

  2. They should build a skate park in the Ivanhoe reservoir!!!

  3. hopalong chastity

    Convert the Reservoir Complex into a permanent campground for the homeless from DTLA.
    Or give it away to developers in exchange for funding Mayor Garcetti’s reelection campaign.

  4. Why do you think if water is not allocated for human exploitation that it is ‘wasted’

    • hopalong chastity

      In this case, the DWP is pumping water out of the reservoir and down the street into the storm drain. The water from the reservoir will finish its Los Angeles journey as it dumps out into the Pacific Ocean.
      At least it will help flush accumulated debris and toxins down through the storm drain to the ocean.
      You are correct, the water isn’t “wasted”.
      The DWP is making sure this water gets “totally wasted”.

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