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Los Angeles Convention Center Combats State's Drought Conditions

May 11, 2015

Story by Rachel Wimberly, TSNN

Running a large facility with thousands of visitors coming through can be a challenge in the middle of one of the most severe droughts on record in the state of California, but that’s the daily reality for the Los Angeles Convention Center.

As a result, LACC officials have implemented several water conservation measures, as well as partnered with LA Green.

“Environmental sustainability is an area of critical importance for the Los Angeles Convention Center,” said Brad Gessner, senior vice president of AEG Facilities and General Manager of the Los Angeles Convention Center.

He added, “Water conservation is a vital facet of our environmental initiatives and we constantly seek opportunities to invest in sustainable products, technology, and practices to reduce negative environmental impact.” 

The facility is USGBC LEED-EB Gold certified facility and achieved a 7 percent overall reduction in water consumption in 2014, compared with 2013.

Beginning in February 2014, the LACC also replaced 80 percent of sprinklers located throughout the facility’s outdoor areas. The improved irrigation system features leak-preventing nozzles, which have measurably reduced water usage and waste at the Center.

In addition, the venue reduced irrigation by 33 percent, compared with 2013 by introducing a new, water-saving irrigation plan consisting of separating vegetation areas into two zones. 

As part of the refined irrigation system, the LACC Operations team also is monitoring irrigation meters on a weekly basis to ensure a timely response to any excessive water use or waste and to mitigate any issues before they arise.

Project leaders have found that such precise monitoring will contribute to the LACC’s ongoing effort to lead the convention center industry in environmental sustainability, a vital facet of the LACC’s commitment to excellence.

Water conservation efforts also include updating the fire pump systems; the LACC West Hall jockey pump was replaced with a mechanical seal pump, which has zero water loss emission. 

The center also is looking for ways to reuse water.

Following the SCVA Junior Qualifier competitions held in April, thousands of gallons of water were left over from their setup of volleyball courts/

The LACC shared the water with a local organization Korean Youth and Community Center, who are part of Green LA, and plant on average 1,000 trees annually

As a result, total water reused across both weekends was 6,000 gallons, about one-third of total water used by the show.

KYCC used the water for trees and pressure washers for graffiti removal, and the LACC used it for scrubbers, pressure washers and specific deep-tree watering.

As far as future projects, the LACC also is in the process of reducing its landscaping area by 30,000 square feet and replacing it with drought-resistant plants. The venue also has an upcoming project to retrofit existing toilets with low-flush technology.