Volume 4 Issue 1


Letter from the Editor – Guangyu Wang

Being an editor of a serious journal is never easy, even for someone with years of experience. So for a first-time editor like me, it did not take long to find out how difficult this job really is, to say the least. The Urban Coast makes the job of its editor even harder by its unconventional approach – unlike most scientific or technical journals where the editor’s primary responsibility is to ensure that the experiments, the findings, and the conclusions are scientifically sound (which we do, as well), Urban Coast wants its authors and readers to engage in “constructive discussion and information exchange.” In other words, we want people to offer different perspectives, especially new ideas and even provocative opinions.

This was what on our minds when our Editorial Board came up the theme of ‘Los Angeles River revitalization’ for this issue because we have observed so many conflicting visions playing out in that watershed, both historically and at present. However, we came up short in achieving this objective with the three articles we published in this issue. By all means, these are all excellent articles by authors well-vested in LA River-related issues. They also described and represented well the roles and contributions of three key stakeholders (federal, state, and private) in the river’s revitalization process. We just wished that they could spice up the rhetoric and give readers more of a sense of the conflict and contrast. Instead, they individually showed more harmony than acrimony. But at the end, we have no regret because we see that together these articles sent a compelling message that breaking the institutional barriers and collaboration across the board is what made the progress possible. This is fascinating, instructive, and should happen at every urban rivers watershed!

We also wished that the articles could keep up with the latest happening in that watershed, which is moving at an ever faster pace. Around the time that this issue is printed, the Army Corps of Engineering has just released their preferred alternatives developed under its Los Angeles River ecosystem restoration study. There are news coverage, commentaries, speeches, and even rallies related to this event around the region as we speak. Yes, we know we are a bit behind, as are most periodic journals. On the other hand, we are glad that things are moving forward and fast, and we take this as another vivid testimony of the success achieved through the collaborative efforts featured in these articles.

As in previous issues, besides the focused discussion on the theme of Los Angeles River revitalization, we offer opinions, original research, and case studies related to a wide range of issues. We also debut a new book review section, thanks to Melina Watts for her wonderful idea and contribution. We have articles about restoring wetlands (again!), protecting streams, greening highly urbanized areas, and changing people’s behaviors. There may not seem to be a common thread to connect these diverse topics. But it nevertheless reflects perfectly the diverse nature of our watersheds. Eventually all these pieces of the puzzle will fall into the right place to show a perfect picture of our common vision.


Letter from the Executive Director: “Who Will Pay to Clean up Stormwater” – Shelley Luce (163 KB)


Achievable Restoration Targets for Urban Wetlands – Joy B. Zedler (242 KB)

Los Angeles River 3.0: Changing the Course of Los Angeles – Omar Brownson & Emily Marsh (413 KB)

Revitalized Rivers and Vibrant Communities: The Promise in Los Angeles – Nancy L.C. Steele, Mike Antos, and Pauline Louie (566 KB)

Urban River Restoration in Los Angeles: the Collaborative Role of California’s State Conservancies – Marc Beyeler & Elena Eger (271 KB)


Reducing Human Consumption of “Do Not Consume” Fish from the Palos Verdes Shelf using Community- Based Social Marketing Techniques – Namju Cho (558 KB)

Impact of Development on Aquatic Benthic Macroinvertebrate Communities in the Santa Monica Mountains of Southern California – Katherine M. Pease, Sarah Sikich, Marissa Maggio, Sarah Diringer, Mark Abramson, and Mark Gold (555 KB)

Climate Change Implications for the Ballona Wetlands Restoration – Sean P. Bergquist, Jeremy S. Paul, William Trott, Alissa Brown, Guangyu Wang, and Shelley L. Luce (1.9 MB)


Urban Greening: A Residential Learning Lab – Isabelle Duvivier & Linda Jassim (927 KB)

Madrona Marsh Restoration and Enhancement Project: Preserving the Last Freshwater Marsh in Los Angeles County – Tracy Drake, John Dettle, and Abigal Kent (379 KB)

Letter from the Director (163 KB)


Notes and Abstracts (318 KB)