City of Los Angeles offers free recycled water to residents

July 13, 2016
Recycled water fill station at LA Zoo opens.

LOS ANGELES, JULY 13, 2016 -- Councilmember David Ryu of the 4th District, along with officials from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the Los Angeles Bureau of Sanitation (LA SAN), and the Los Angeles Zoo (LA Zoo) announced the opening of the City of Los Angeles’ Recycled Water Fill Station at the LA Zoo on Friday, June 17th, 2016. Every Tuesday beginning June 21st, the fill station will be open to all eligible Los Angeles residents and business owners who want to pick up free disinfected tertiary recycled water for approved, non-drinking uses like watering trees, shrubs and lawns. The City of Los Angeles’ Recycled Water Fill Station pilot program helps "Save the Drop" by offering recycled water to offset demand for drinking water as Los Angeles continues to weather through drought.

The fill station is located on the northernmost side of the LA Zoo parking lot at 5333 Zoo Drive, Los Angeles, and will be open every Tuesday from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. starting June 21. Qualifying customers can receive up to 300 gallons of disinfected tertiary recycled water for each day that the fill station is open. To avail of the recycled water, Angelenos must present their LADWP bill and undergo a training session to learn about the approved uses and proper handling of recycled water. Program participants must bring their own water-tight containers and sign a user agreement before filling up.

Councilmember David Ryu said, "Due to existing efforts, LA is using just as much water today as we did 45 years ago, despite having a million more people. Everyone is doing their part to conserve water and our efforts are admirable, but we need to come together to do even more." He added, "Nearly 90 percent of the city’s water is imported from hundreds of miles away. In order to lessen our reliance on imported water, the city is expanding and building its local water supply. This is being done through the expansion of stormwater capture, groundwater, and recycled water. The Recycled Water Fill Station at the Los Angeles Zoo will only help further our city’s conservation efforts."

"Angelenos are doing their part to conserve water in the midst of a punishing drought. But we can always do more," said Mayor Garcetti. "By providing residents and businesses with free recycled water this summer, we can give our trees and yards the water they need and continue to Save the Drop."

"LADWP and our city partners are excited to make recycled water more accessible and more familiar to all our customers,” said Marty Adams, LADWP Senior Assistant General Manager for the Water System. “Opening this recycled water fill station not only promotes local water supplies and drives down our reliance on imported water, but it also helps our customers save on their water bill. If you have the ability to drive to the LA Zoo parking lot and pick up free water to irrigate your trees and lawns, come right over.” He added, “As William Mulholland said, there it is, take it!"

"Getting recycled water within reach of potential users is paramount, said Enrique Zaldivar, Director of LA Sanitation. "This recycled water fill station, centrally located at the LA Zoo, will provide public access to advanced, disinfected, tertiary-treated recycled water, for landscape irrigation."

The LA Zoo is a prime location for a recycled water fill station because of its proximity and access to existing purple pipe. The fill station at the LA Zoo parking lot receives recycled water from the LA-Glendale Water Reclamation Plant, just on the other side of the 5 Freeway from the zoo.

John Lewis, LA Zoo Director, says, "The Los Angeles Zoo is committed to the conservation of natural resources demonstrated by our stormwater capturing parking lot, the installation of Electric Vehicle charging stations, and now participating in this pilot program to provide citizens one more way to reduce their use of potable water." He added, “The Zoo encourages neighbors and residents in the region to take advantage of this resource to conserve water now and in the future."

Recycled water is wastewater that has been processed through primary, secondary and tertiary treatment and disinfected with chlorine. It meets the strict standards and safety regulations of the State Water Resources Control Board and is safe for all human contact except for drinking.

The Recycled Water Fill Station Pilot Program will soon expand with the opening of another fill station at the LA-Glendale Water Reclamation Plant, where customers can also fill up on weekends.

For more information about the City of Los Angeles’ Recycled Water Fill Station and to sign up for a training session to be eligible to receive free recycled water, visit