The original Pollard ditch and surrounding area was a scary mess, essentially a big fat field of weeds and dirt. But according to Favela, it used to be quite the skate spot.
He tells some crazy tales about a big skateboard contest that went down here in the late 1970’s downstream where the ditch bowls left.
Legend has it that Desert Surfing pro Scott Mayo ran power for a nearby casa to power the toons and Cliff Everett won the event with an array of bert slides and other radical surf-inspired maneuvers.
The first point of action was to meet with MCi engineer Marcos Medina, the guy drawing the construction plans, to check the viability of any late amendments to his project. With discussions taking place over a spicy Mexican food at Dona Lupe Cafe, Medina endorsed the EPSA skate friendly idea on the condition of that “no cost would be added.”
Cautious but open-minded, Medina felt the Pollard ditch redo would be a good fit for skateboarding because (1) there is no big volume storm water feeder ditch going into Pollard and (2) there was going to be a grassy, family-friendly pond park area built adjacent.
The Pollard Pond Improvements project was one of almost 100 projects recommended to improve flood control in watersheds throughout the City of El Paso.
The El Paso Stormwater Master Plan, approved by the Public Service Board and City Council in 2009, lays out the capital improvement projects (including bigger culverts and reservoirs) that prepare the city for major rain events and focuses on areas where flood risk is particularly high.
The Pollard ditch is located where Hamilton Avenue “T-bones” Pollard Street right next to the US-54 South freeway.
In El Paso speak, it’s really close the Chicos Tacos on Dyer Street…
FYI – this Google Earth image is of the “old” ditch prior to the rebuild.