Local, county and state officials gathered recently to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Armagosa Creek Recharge project recently near the California Aqueduct at 25th St. West and Elizabeth Lake Road.

The project, a collaborative effort between the city of Palmdale, Palmdale Water District, Antelope Valley-East Kern Water Agency and the Los Angeles County Water Districts, will pipe State Water Project water from the California Aqueduct to a series of recharge ponds near Elizabeth Lake Road and 25th St. West, where the water will be allowed to percolate through the ground into the aquifer beneath.

In addition to improving the regional water resource supply, the project will promote preservation of the Armagosa Creek corridor and provide the community at large with a nature park to recreate and encourage citizens to conserve their precious water resources. Pathways will weave through the nature park and around the recharge basins among specific plant species adapted to the desert environment.

Educational kiosks and interpretive plaques will be placed at strategic locations along the path to provide information on the desert environment, urban runoff, watershed processes, and the recharge facilities. Future shade covers and picnic tables throughout the park will invite community members to sit, relax and enjoy their natural surroundings.

Eventually, recycled water from the Palmdale wastewater treatment plant will be piped to the recharge basins to further help feed the aquifer. Overall, the total project is expected to cost $17 million.