Did you know that Cedars-Sinai sits on top of an abundant natural water source? The underground river runs beneath San Vicente Boulevard and carries thousands of gallons of water.
In the past, changes in underground water levels caused problems for the Cedars-Sinai facilities staff.
“Because of the high water table running underneath us, we needed to design our buildings to pump the water out to the sewer to keep our buildings dry,” says Sean Collins, Executive Director, Facilities Planning Design and Construction. “A few years ago, we developed a system to utilize that water instead of wasting it.”
In 2013, a decision was made to use the groundwater under the hospital to fulfill some on the hospital’s water needs. Engineers designed a vast network of pumps, pipes, tanks, and filters to put the water to work.
The water now gets pumped through filters that clean it so it can be used by the massive cooling towers and air conditioning system throughout the hospital.
Today, we were honored to host LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, who visited to see the underground water plant and recognize the efforts made to reduce our water use. Water conservation is a key initiative for the Mayor, who set a goal of reducing industrial water usage by 100 million gallons across the city.
“We are called to reengineer our relationship to water in this city that is now the third largest economy of any metropolitan area in the world,” said Mayor Garcetti. “It’s an opportunity to reinvent and to reimagine our water infrastructure; and a task that’s made all the more urgent by the historic drought and the new normal that we face.”
Tapping the groundwater under the hospital has led to a savings of about 29 million gallons a year at Cedars-Sinai, accomplishing 29% of the Mayor’s goal for the entire city.
“We’ve made a lot of progress with our water conservation efforts, but there’s more room to grow,” says Sean. “We’re looking forward to continued improvement.”