A Big Muddy Puddle In Marina Del Rey Will Become A Beautiful New Park

The revitalization plans for the L.A. River have received plenty of attention and now a waterway on the Westside looks to be getting a fancy new makeover, too.

Marina Del Rey's Oxford Basin—a flood control channel for the former marshland—is in the process of being turned into a cool public park, which will feature a walking path, new native and drought-tolerant plants, educational signs and observation areas. The $14.5 million Oxford Basin Multiuse Enhancement Project will also increase the site's ability to prevent flooding, reduce stormwater pollution and improve the overall ecosystem of the area, according to Urbanize LA. Upgrades will include new lighting, more attractive fencing and a separation between the walking path and the Marvin Braude Bike Trail, which according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works, will help "cyclists and pedestrians to more conveniently share the bike trail in this location."

The Oxford Retention Basin, sandwiched between Washington Boulevard and Oxford Avenue, was first built in 1959 to reduce flood risk to nearby communities. Previously the area was used for agricultural purposes and then a municipal dump for many years. Several years after the flood control basin was built, the area was also designated as a Bird Conservation Area at the request of the Audubon Society. From the 1960s to 1980s, it was known as "Duck Pond" for the domesticated ducks that had been introduced to the area. The site was also home to "several hundred abandoned dogs, cats, rabbits, and chickens," according to the LAC DPW, which were removed in 1989 due to environmental disruption. Precautions will be taken to avoid harming existing wildlife during the new construction.

The Oxford Basin Multiuse Enhancement Project is expected to be completed by next spring, and will hopefully get a better nickname by then.