The Corona del Mar Business Improvement District board is considering spending as much as $5,000 to add irrigation to ten tree wells as a final part of a beautification project the group began last summer.
“The biggest issue is irrigation,” said Bernie Svalstad, the chairman of the CdM B.I.D.
In July 2011, the group spent about $100 per tree well to clean and plant 150 tree wells along East Coast Highway; read our story here. Some tree wells are tended by business owners, and those were left alone.
But within a few months, the group voted to spend another $1,887 to replant 18 tree wells that were ravaged by hot weather, dogs and thieves. The group identified tree wells that lined up with parking spaces, adding plants that could handle being stepped on when passengers exited cars; read our story here.
Svalstad said he recently took a two-hour walk with a landscaper to assess all the tree wells, identifying ten locations where irrigation lines have been cut because of curb cuts or other work. The irrigation lines are in place, but there would be construction costs of about $5,000 to reconnect the existing lines, he said. Currently, tree wells without irrigation systems have been hand-watered weekly, but Svalstad said that wasn’t proving adequate to sustain the vegetation.
The group decided to gather a few more bids for the work before proceeding. The bids could be available for review at the group’s June meeting.
The B.I.D. considered installing artificial turf in Corona del Mar’s tree wells had samples installed in two tree wells in the 2800 block of East Coast Highway in January 2010. Later the group decided that fake grass was “considered inconsistent with the aesthetic that is desired in Corona del Mar.”
Scott Laidlaw, a B.I.D. board member, said the group worked to find the best mixes of plants for each tree well.
“By and large, the tree wells are doing really well,” he said.