SAN LUIS OBISPO COUNTY – Caltrans is installing “smart irrigation” controllers, a recycled-water pipeline, and low-flow fixtures to cut its water use along state highways throughout the Central Coast.
“As the drought intensifies here in California, we are making every effort to lead the way conserving the state’s precious water supplies,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty.
Caltrans plans to install more than 30 “smart irrigation” controllers – which can reduce water usage as much as 50 to 60 percent – at various locations along U.S. Highway 101 and State Route 1 from Santa Barbara County to Santa Cruz County. The smart irrigation devices monitor plant health and apply water only when absolutely necessary. They automatically turn off when it rains and when it is forecast to rain. They also shut off and notify the water manager if the system malfunctions.