January 4, 2018 - The pond at the newly named Veterans Park is scheduled to be finished in summer 2018, after crews rebuild the walls of the pond and create a safety shelf just below the surface of the water. The need for the additional work was not originally scheduled as part of the project and was not apparent until the sidewalk around the pond was removed, exposing erosion behind the pond wall.
This additional work necessitates a contract change to the $2.1 million renovation project and the details are currently being worked on. The City Council, on September 5, 2017, approved a contract amendment for the designer to complete final design for the reconstruction of the pond wall.
On November 21, 2017, the Council approved the design for a monument at the park to honor the men and women who have served our country in the armed forces. Veterans Park, formerly known as Village Pond Park, will have five monuments around a majestic tree. The monuments honor the Coast Guard, Air Force, Army, Marines and Navy. Each etched concrete monument will have a bronze seal of the branch of the service it represents, topped with a mosaic folded American flag.
A construction contract for the monument area has not been approved, so an overall project deadline has not been set.
November 16, 2017 - The resident Design Committee for Veterans Park has worked to develop potential concepts for a monument to honor the men and women who have served our country. On Tuesday, November 21, City Council will review the Conceptual Design for a Veterans monument at the park. The artwork is available for viewing below.
July 12, 2017 - The City has installed a camera at Village Pond Park to capture live footage of the construction activities taking place at the park. Check out the live camera footage above to see the process of construction at the park.
Draining operations are anticipated to take approximately one month to complete.
June 08, 2017 - United Engineering started draining the pond and began grading operations at Village Pond Park. AquaBio, the City's wildlife consultant, will continue to be on-site for the collection and care for any fish and turtles found within the pond during the draining process.
In addition, United Engineering received approval of the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan and is currently procuring materials that have long delivery schedules, such as the bridge. The contractor is on schedule to complete work (weather permitting) and reopen the park by early 2018.
A picture of the facilities with views of open space where the birds can roam free as well as a couple of their covered shelters for the birds to sleep at night (pictured right).
March 7, 2017 - City Council approved a $2.1 million construction contract to United Engineering & Construction to complete the Village Pond Park Improvement project. With the approval of the contract, the site will be fenced off on March 13, at which time the park will be closed to the public. Shortly thereafter, construction will begin. The construction is expected to take nine months with re-opening of the park in early 2018. An article featured in the Orange County Register detailed some of the pending improvements.
The City anticipates awarding a contract to the most qualified and competitive firm in March, at which time, the selected contractor will coordinate closure of the park and begin pumping water into the sanitary sewer for treatment by the El Toro Water District.
The City has hired Aquabio Environmental Technologies (“Aquabio”) for wildlife relocation services. The firm has extensive experience in similar projects, and a fully-trained, licensed, and certified staff to manage sensitive wildlife relocation efforts. Aquabio is currently working with the State Department of Fish and Wildlife (“CDFW”) to obtain a permit to relocate wildlife. Prior to permit issuance, CDFW has required Aquabio to “seine” the lake in order to gather information regarding the number and types of aquatic species present in the lake. The process of seining uses large nets to draw in and inventory a sample of aquatic species in the lake. Based on this sampling, CDFW will provide specific instructions regarding the relocation of each species that will become the basis for a permit to relocate the wildlife. According to Aquabio, conditions around the pond must be dry for approximately one week before seining can occur. Aquabio expects to seine the lake within the next few weeks, weather permitting.