Irrigation district construction to begin around Rancho Santa Fe trail


By Karen Billing

The Rancho Santa Fe Association approved a temporary construction easement for the Santa Fe Irrigation District as the district replaces an aging pressure-reducing station on Rambla de las Flores, south of La Granada.

According to Arnold Keene, RSF Association field operations manager, the water district is in the process of replacing pressure-reducing stations throughout the district and the easement will allow them to excavate onto RSF Association property for the installation of an underground vault.

As the vault includes some above ground fixtures, the RSF Association’s trails and recreation committee had requested that an alternate location as it would be quite an interruption to the trail system and traffic flow, said RSF Association President Philip Wilkinson. Wilkinson said that is one of the busiest and most dangerous crossings for equestrians in the Ranch.

Upon extensive review, the irrigation district determined it would not be possible to move the location as it is too cost prohibitive. However, by granting the easement, the RSF Association will allow the district to place the unit the maximum distance from the road as well as allow the Association to provide landscape screening of the unit.

The temporary easement allows not only the landscape but for the trail to detour around the little pond there. There will also be fencing to direct horses away from the construction.

Keene said the district’s work should be complete in six months, although the accompanying roadwork in the area is moving ahead of schedule.