Civic Center fountain refurbishment back on track

Civic Center fountain refurbishment back on track
The civic center fountain, which serves as a focal point for plaza events, has become worn over time. Ongoing maintenance has repaired sections of cement and tiles in a patchwork fashion. Photo by Promise Yee

OCEANSIDE — After a $10,000 hiccup, Civic Center fountain refurbishments are back on track.

The fountain, which serves as a focal point for plaza events, has become worn over time. Ongoing maintenance has repaired sections of cement and tiles in a patchwork fashion.

In December 2014 California Waters Development Inc. began approximately $375,000 of refurbishments to unify tile work, smooth the fountain’s overall appearance and reflect the original design.

The development company is also installing LED lights to illuminate the pool and landscape.

To ensure work moves forward, city council approved $10,000 to extend construction support services with Aquatic Design Group on March 4. The services have been essential in giving the 27-year-old fountain a facelift.

The contract with the design group needed to be extended after inconsistencies were discovered between the 1988 as-build-drawings and actual dimensions, wire locations and plumbing.

“The out build and palms (tree lighting) wiring didn’t match up with the footprint layout,” Gary Smith, city associate engineer, said.

Discrepancies resulted in several requests for information, and exhausted support service hours. The renewed contract ensures support services through completion.

Another challenge of the project is fountain water must be from a reclaimed water source while drought level II water restriction measures are in effect.

There is also a health and safety requirement to ensure the water is safe if a person accidentally comes in contact with it. Smith said for that reason reclaimed water suitable for irrigation will not be used. Other reclaimed water sources include desalinated water and reclaimed water runoff from firefighting drills or other high-water-use events.

A water source will be identified to fill the fountain. City staff will then have the ongoing task of seeking best water sources to replenish the fountain on a monthly basis.

Smith said the city is taking measures to ensure the fountain is kept up because it is a cherished community gathering place.

“People just enjoy the fountain, they always have,” Smith said. “It’s a nice place to go.”

Fountain refurbishment is expected to be completed in mid April.

Next year city staff will start the process to gain funds and approval to refurbish the smaller Civic Center community room fountain.

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