Kayakers, strollers, fisherman, river fans can start to gear up.
The Los Angeles City Council voted 13-0 Wednesday to approve a plan to open up a section of the Los Angeles River this summer for recreational use, including self-guided boating.
The vote for a "Los Angeles River Recreational Zone Pilot Program" came after a recommendation from the council's Ad Hoc River Committee, chaired by Council District 1's Ed Reyes, which has held several hearings on the matter.
The pilot program will operate from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and will use rangers and volunteers to patrol and assist visitors.
The zone will stretch from approximately Fletcher Drive to the Los Angeles River Center near Downtown Los Angeles.
An earlier plan had extended the area as far north as Atwater Village. That plan was revised after several meeting with Atwater Village community members, who worried about traffic, trash and safety.
Existing pocket parks in the Elysian Valley will provide access to the area, with additional parking planned for boaters and others.
The new proposal gives primary responsibility to the Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority (MRCA) for managing the area.
MCRA rangers will patrol the Zone area from dusk until dawn, enforcing MRCA rules and providing security.
A variety city and county departments as well as the Army Corps of Engineers are also cooperating in the project.
Community debate had centered on the exact borders of the project, and how neighboring communities might be affected by traffic.
Others objected to the ban on dogs in the riverbed.
Environmentalists are also concerned about the impact the new uses might have on bird and plant life in the natural-bottomed stretch of river fed by an aquifer.
And, of course, concerns about water quality continue, though in the summertime, the Los Angeles River is fed almost entirely by reclaimed water from treatment plants.
Read our previous coverage:
L.A. River Study: Should Glendale Narrows Lose the Concrete?
Public Hearing on Glendale Narrows Recreation Zone Set
L.A. River's Glendale Narrows on Track to Open for Boating