Oceanside replacing grass with artificial turf around city facilities
Thus far, the city has replaced grassy areas next to sidewalks along Pier View Way and Civic Center Drive, which border the civic center to the south and north, from Coast Highway to Nevada Street. Other areas where grass has been replaced include part of a courtyard next to the city’s library and around the pier amphitheater.
Within the past six months, the city has replaced more than 21,000 square feet of grass at a cost of about $175,000, Dafforn said. The Metropolitan Water District’s turf removal rebate program will reimburse the city about $40,000 of that cost, Dafforn said.
The replacement project will save the city about 1.3 million gallons of water each year, officials said. That’s enough water to supply about 15 homes for an entire year.
Dafforn said he hasn’t received many public comments about the artificial turf, but what he has heard has been primarily positive.
When more money becomes available, the city will continue replacing more grass around other city facilities, he said.
Still, there are detractors who dislike artificial turf for environmental and other reasons, including that it heat from the sun make it uncomfortable to sit on.
“I’m pretty unhappy that the Metropolitan Water District is giving rebates for artificial turf at all,” said Oceanside resident and community activist Nadine Scott. “It’s definitely going the wrong way. Plants are very good for our environment, both aesthetically and air quality and soil wise. Artificial turf has no such benefits.”
Turf replacement is just one of several ways Oceanside is trying to conserve water.
In April, the city announced it would not refill its Civic Center fountain after a renovation project. The city recently built a temporary metal fence around the pool until the drought is over.
The City Council voted in May to spend $1 million on a pipeline that will carry recycled water to irrigation systems at the Goat Hill Park golf course and the El Corazon soccer fields.
The city also plans to replace water fixtures at city facilities with more efficient hardware, including 282 sinks in city buildings — such as fire stations and City Hall — 54 urinals and 190 toilets.