Extreme precipitation patterns from climate change lead to heavy rainfall events that cause rivers or creeks to overflow and flood the surrounding areas. Floods will increase in frequency and intensity, with areas that have not historically experienced flooding becoming increasingly exposed.
Potential Physical Interventions
Click on any strategy below for more detailed descriptions.
Calabazas Creek Flood Protection
Project to provide flood protection to 2,483 parcels in the Calabazas Creek watershed. A long detention basin next to the creek was built to capture high storm flows, preventing the creek from overtopping its banks in a 1% flood.
Valley Water repaired 14 severely eroding banks, using as little “hardscape” as possible. The project incorporated environmental stewardship principles to reduce erosion, with vegetation to enhance habitat for wildlife. Valley Water reduced the cost of the project by collaborating with the City of San José, which rebuilt a bicycle motocross (BMX) park at Calabazas Park.
Coyote Valley Preservation
In November 2019, 937 acres in Coyote Valley were permanently protected through an innovative public and private partnership among Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST), Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority (OSA) and the City of San José. The $93.46 million acquisition deal was funded in part by Measure T, a $650 million infrastructure bond approved by San José voters in November 2018
Napa River Flood Protection
The Napa River had a history of catastrophic flooding events, impacting downtown Napa, tourism, and agricultural assets. After a long history of utilizing engineered solutions, a multi-faceted collaboration with stakeholders, the Army Corps of Engineers, businesses, and others worked together to develop an approach to let the river run free - a "Living River" concept that was then and is still groundbreaking. The Napa Flood Protection project is an early and lasting example of using natural systems to manage flooding while protecting important assets in an affordable, durable, and effective way.
Cathedral Park Rain Garden
Portland's Biggest Rain Garden: Portland, Oregon has redeveloped their city to include a multitude of nature based solutions on large scales. One of their most successful implementations was developing 3,600 rain gardens throughout the city. Cathedral Park houses Portland's biggest rain garden.