The Weekly Roundup
The Weekly Roundup
June 16, 2017 | What’s Doing in Lafayette?
Notes from Chief Christensen: High Temperatures Ahead
Although we had snow in the Sierras last weekend, the forecasters are telling us it is going to get hot over the next few days. So hot, in fact, that our friends at the National Weather Service are sending alerts suggesting it’s going to be dangerous. Any time that we have significant shifts in temperature over a few days, the possibility of heat injuries grows dramatically. It was OK to hike the trail last weekend; how much can the temperature really change in just a week? The answer: a lot. This is not the weekend to do the work you’ve been putting off. Do your work in the morning or the late evening, but stay out of the heat during the day. If you get too hot during the day, that’s a great excuse to escape to the library for a couple of hours. It’s a gorgeous facility filled with books to read to keep you occupied -- and it’s cool. Cool as in cold, not cool as in hip. Also: it’s never a bad thing to check up on the older neighbor to make sure they are taken care of. Heat affects all of us just a little bit differently. For us at the police department, we know it will be a few days of traffic signals overheating, people with shorter than normal tempers, and overheating cars. Unfortunately we will also have a few days of dogs-locked-in-cars calls. NEVER leave your best friend in the car on a hot day, even if you leave the windows down! It’s just too hot inside that box for our furry friends. Leave them at home. They’ll appreciate it much more than going on the trip. This is a weekend where we need to be aware of the conditions outside. Be safe, drink some water, and don’t hesitate to call 911 if you see a person or pet in trouble!
Rock the Plaza Tonight!
We built this city on
land use planning rock and roll! That’s right! Rock the Plaza, brought to you once again by our own Chamber of Commerce and those hot dog cooking dudes at the Rotary Club, returns once again to Lafayette starting this evening, and running every Friday night in June from 6:30pm-8:30pm. Get out there tonight to see the Dream Posse run through a set of 1960’s classics. There’s no cost; bring a picnic and enjoy the band! See you there!
From EBMUD Regarding the Water Quality
Dear Lafayette Elected Officials and City Staff:
I understand that recent press coverage has caused serious concern to residents in the East Bay about the safety of their drinking water. First, I want to clarify that EBMUD drinking water quality remains in full compliance with all state and federal regulations, and the District is confident we will remain in full compliance.
A senior engineer from the State Division of Drinking Water confirmed that EBMUD drinking water continues to meet all health standards and is taking all necessary and appropriate steps to reduce disinfection by-products in the service area, as quoted in today’s East Bay Times/San Jose Mercury News article (“How safe is your East Bay Drinking Water?”).
California’s historic drought, followed by record-setting rainfall, continues to have impacts on drinking water systems throughout the San Francisco Bay Area. EBMUD is experiencing water quality and treatment challenges due to reduced water consumption, higher temperatures, and higher concentrations of natural organic materials in our untreated ‘raw’ water from Pardee Reservoir.
In our regular collection and analysis of water samples throughout the distribution system, the District has seen a rise in the concentration of THMs – disinfection byproducts formed when chlorine reacts with naturally-occurring organic matter in water (and occurs in nearly all public water systems)—over the past few years. In recent years, EBMUD has exceeded our internal goal for THMs which is conservatively set at half of the level of the regulatory standard. To be more specific, the federal and state limit of THMs is 80 ppb, our current average is 58 ppb, and our internal goal is 40 ppb.
The increase in THM concentration can be attributed to changes in the composition and amount of natural organic matter in EBMUD’s water supply. To address this challenge, the District has increased water quality sampling, implemented operational changes and a new flushing program. EBMUD is also piloting an aeration system at the Lafayette Water Treatment Plant to strip out THMs. In addition, long-term infrastructure upgrades to address this challenge are already underway.
This past November, EBMUD configured a pilot water treatment facility to test new treatment processes, doses and configurations. EBMUD is using this testing facility to evaluate different coagulants and filter configurations to address these water quality challenges.
The District is flushing pipes in areas most affected by these conditions. Flushing removes sediment and mineral deposits, and helps maintain a chlorine residual within the distribution system to ensure the delivery of high quality water to customers.
Over the last two weeks, EBMUD has been flushing water mains in Orinda and will be soon moving to the Berkeley Hills. We will continue to monitor the water quality closely in all areas. Attached is a map of the pressure zone in Orinda, in the Sundown Terrace and Charles Hill neighborhoods (not the Lafayette Hills as reported), that we flushed last week. Customers in Orinda and Berkeley have been notified via Nextdoor about flushing in their neighborhoods.
I have also attached an FAQ sheet that should address any questions that you may receive.
I am working on posting this information on Nextdoor today and encourage you to direct any concerned constituents my way. My contact information is below. If I am unavailable, they can reach out to Javier Ramos, Water Distribution Supervisor, at 510-287-1137 or Javier.firstname.lastname@example.org .
Kathryn A. Horn
Community Affairs Representative
East Bay Municipal Utility District
Creeks Master Plan review by Planning Commission
Following two community workshops and review by various boards with oversight responsibility on or adjacent to downtown creeks, a final draft of the Downtown Creeks Plan has been prepared, along with an Addendum to the Downtown Specific Plan FEIR to address potential environmental impacts from this plan. Those documents will be reviewed by the Planning Commission on June 19 and a recommendation will be forwarded to the City Council. For more information, check the June 19 Planning Commission agenda.
State Route 24 Nighttime Lane Reductions for Resurfacing Work in Lafayette/Walnut Creek Starting Monday June 19
The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is working on a storm damage repair project to resurface State Route 24 (SR-24) with AC pavement from just east of Pleasant Hill Road in Lafayette to Interstate 680 in Walnut Creek. The work is to repair damage created when excessive rain caused delamination and undue unraveling of the top layer of road surface. Areas of pothole damage also will be addressed by the resurfacing work. Work hours are anticipated to be as follows:
- SR-24 eastbound and westbound from just east of Pleasant Hill Road to I-680 6/19/17 – 8/18/17
- Lane reductions nightly Monday through Friday from 9:00 PM until 6:00 AM.
The project is anticipated to be completed in late Summer of 2017. Please follow signage directions during closures. Noise, traffic delays and odors may be associated with the construction work. All work is weather permitting. Other projects are anticipated to be starting within the coming months addressing resurfacing work on I-680 in Contra Costa County. More information can be found here. Motorists should drive with caution through the work zone. Get real-time traffic on Caltrans Quickmaps here. Or follow Caltrans on Twitter here. Caltrans appreciates your patience as we work to maintain California’s highways. Please #BeWorkZoneAlert.
I-680 Express Lanes to Open in September
The I-680 Contra Costa Express Lane opening is getting closer with an expected opening in September 2017! The lanes will operate Monday through Friday from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. During times when traffic is light, tolls will automatically adjust lower so that traffic in the corridor flows across all the lanes and additional congestion is not created. The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), which operates and manages the I-680 Contra Costa Express Lane, will continuously monitor lane operations to ensure that traffic flows the best it can. All-day operating hours encourage and reward carpooling whenever there is congestion, which often happens outside the peak commute hours. The goal of express lanes is to get more people, not just cars, where they need to go. The hours are also consistent with neighboring lanes on I-680 and I-580 in Alameda County to limit driver confusion. All drivers must have FasTrak® to use the lanes between 5 a.m. and 8 p.m. Carpools must have a FasTrak Flex® toll tag to use the lanes toll-free. With all-day hours of operation, be sure to consider all of your travel when selecting your FasTrak toll tag. Solo drivers need a standard FasTrak or FasTrak Flex toll tag to pay to use the lanes between 5 a.m. and 8 p.m. Visit expresslanes.511.org for more information about express lanes or bayareafastrak.org to order a toll tag.
Lafayette Hiking Group: Saturday, June 17, Redwood Park
Enjoy a shady hike amid the redwoods and ferns. We will hike the Bridle and Orchard trails to the French Trail, then to Tres Sendas returning via the gentle Stream Trail. Hopefully the stream will still be flowing. Bring hiking sticks if you use them. Strenuous, hilly 4-5 miles. Leader Erwin Johnson. Meet in the parking lot out from Lafayette BART’s main entrance at 8:30 a.m. We form carpools to the trail-head. Bring lunch or snacks, water, layered clothing, good walking shoes, sun protection and money to contribute toward gas, entry fee and parking ($3 local).
This Week at the Library
To see what’s happening at the Lafayette Library and Learning Center this week, click http://www.lllcf.org/program-calendar/. Support your Library - Shop at Friends Corner Book Shop, corner of 1st St. & Golden Gate Way!
Quote for the Week
What is life but reaching for an answer,
And what is death but a refusal to grow.
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This weekly summary is prepared by City Manager Steven Falk for the Lafayette City Council, staff, and the Lafayette community. Do you have thoughts about this week’s Summary or a contribution for next week’s message? Forward it to him now!