Ubiquitous in the urban landscape, concrete channels embody a mid-20th-century attitude of subduing nature and maximizing developable land. Yet these optimistically-engineered structures have proven hard to maintain, and society increasingly regrets the loss of riparian ecosystems and the opportunity for human recreation and renewal once offered by the natural streams.
As concrete channels inevitably age and reach the end of their design lives, river managers confront the question of what to do with this deteriorating infrastructure. Can the channels be rebuilt or modified to pass floods increasing due to urbanization and climate change? Or is this an opportunity to implement alternative approaches that restore valuable functions of natural rivers? Scholars, practitioners, and managers will share ideas and experiences from California and elsewhere in the US, and look forward to the challenges and opportunities of rethinking the concrete channel.
The conference program is still being developed, so check back in the coming weeks.
Speakers include Carol Armstrong (City of Los Angeles), Mitch Avalon (Contra Costa County Public Works), Josephine Axt (US Army Corps of Engineers, invited), Jack Curley (Marin County Public Works), Jim Fiedler (Santa Clara Valley Water District), David Fowler (Milwaukee Metro Sewerage District), Jeff Haltiner (ESA-PWA & UC Berkeley), Ralph Johnson (Alameda County Public Works), Lewis MacAdams (Friends of Los Angeles River), Scott Nicholson (US Army Corps & UC Berkeley), Chip Sullivan (UC Berkeley), Phil Williams (ESA-PWA & UC Berkeley).
Visit the event website to complete the 2-step registration process: http://laep.ced.berkeley.edu/next100years/events/the-future-of-the-concrete-channel/
This conference is held as part of the centennial celebration of the Department of Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning, UC Berkeley.