September 13, 2009
MacArthur Park's Renovated 'Meadow' Opens
MacArthur Park Children's Meadow officially opened Saturday morning. Now the former dust bowl is a synthetic field of modest dreams. Eagerly anticipated since its groundbreaking, the completed $2.5 million project had kids testing soccer skills before the ribbon was cut.
"Last night I came by to take a look," says Councilmember Ed Reyes, who began working on the project since he was the field deputy for District One in 1991. "Families were sitting around the field and five impromptu games were being played . . . and it was 10:30 in the evening."
That section of the park's inability to grow grass wasn't caused only by soccer players trampling over the sod. The gentle sloping lawn was once the northern tip of the lake before Wilshire Blvd split the park in 1934. "This is an old marsh. The water table is really high, and in that area roots would always rot," said Reyes. "The grass would never take. No matter how many thousands of dollars spent on new grass, it would die in a very short period."