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Riverside County’s Diamond Valley Lake Slated for Improvements by Metropolitan Water District
The Metropolitan Water District (MWD) of Southern California has announced a variety of improvements being made at Diamond Valley Lake, the largest drinking water reservoir in Southern California. The improvements are part of MWD’s commitment to the local community.
Metropolitan board Chairman Randy Record praised the improvements that have already been made and spoke of the future at Diamond Valley Lake saying, “These improvements represent creative, cost-efficient ways to build on recreational uses of our stunning Diamond Valley Lake. We have invested millions of dollars into turning this resource into a world-class fishing destination. We look forward to more conversations with our partners about how we can work together to continue making improvements to the area for the benefit of local residents and visitors alike, while protecting our water and natural resources.”
Diamond Valley Lake was recently named by Bassmaster Magazine as 2018’s number two destination in the West for bass fishing. The lake, near Hemet in southwest Riverside County, is known by Southern California’s outdoor enthusiasts for its great fishing, extensive hiking and biking trails and its spectacular wildflower blooms.
Recent improvements now offer visitors new, permanent marina restrooms and expanded marina hours have been made possible by recent upgrades to the facility’s main access road to protect local wildlife, who are most active at night. Road improvement include the installation of 10 steel plates over concrete culverts on either side of the road to ensure animals can safely cross, and added rumble strips and signs to slow traffic.
The road improvements mean the marina’s concessionaire could keep the marina open during pre-dawn and late-night hours. The marina currently operates from sunrise to sunset, except for special events. Metropolitan also is currently seeking a long-term concessionaire through a request for proposals process.
Metropolitan is also now exploring the possibility of connecting the trails between Diamond Valley Lake and nearby Lake Skinner. However, Bodily contact activities with the water remains prohibited at Diamond Valley Lake in order to ensure the safety of the region’s drinking water.
“While our primary mission is to deliver a high-quality, reliable water supply to millions of Southern California residents, we value the opportunity to work with our communities, including those surrounding our facilities, to enhance recreational opportunities and protect our natural resources,” said Jeffrey Kightlinger, Metropolitan’s general manager.
A non-binding Memorandum of Intent (MOI) was signed last year by Eastern Municipal Water District, city of Hemet, Riverside County and the Valley-Wide Recreation and Park District and to explore long-term potential development of additional recreational facilities surrounding the lake. The new improvements align with the MOI. Additionally, the MOI outlines responsibilities of each agency regarding improvements, much of which will depend on outside funding sources, including private investors and grant funding.