Del Mar restoration brings nutrients, wildlife

County Supervisor Pam Slater-Price shares enthusiasm with project manager David Kay, who has dedicated 15 years to the San Dieguito Wetlands Restoration Project.

A crowd of more than 50 people wait to see the tides rush into the San Dieguito Lagoon for the first time in many decades.

By Claire Harlin

Staff Writer

Contractors removed an earthen dam on Sept. 29 near Del Mar Dog Beach, allowing tidal flows to make contact with the San Dieguito wetlands for the first time in many decades.

A number of community leaders and environmental experts joined together to see the ocean and river connect, bringing nutrients and fish to the wetlands and attracting birds. This almost final step in construction of the 150-acre preserve is part of a project to mitigate impacts caused by San Onofre Nuclear Generating Stations 2 and 3. Many fish are killed due to the fact that the plant uses the ocean as a cooling mechanism.

Jacqueline Winrerer, president of Friends of the San Dieguito River Valley, said she has been in Del Mar for 46 years and remembers the original mitigation around 1970.

“This is so terrific,” she said. “It’s many years in the making, and it’s not entirely the final element of the restoration, but it’s a more special one.”

Project Manager David Kay, of Southern California Edison, said he has dedicated 15 years to this project, which was agreed upon in 1991.

“You want to get it right the first time,” he said of the many years put into this project. “You have to do a number of studies and engineering to know it will work as designed.”

A five-month dredging project began in mid-February to remove 80,000 cubic yards of sand from the San Dieguito River channel to allow for better exchange of water from the ocean and the newly restored ecosystem. During the weeks leading up to the dam removal, excavating crews and equipment visible from Highway 101 have been working to place 50,000 cubic yards of sand on the beach for replenishment.

The beach will have to be dredged again within a few years, said Kay, and the trench will also naturally shift.

Jointly funded by San Diego Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison, the project totaled about $9 million over the past 20 years.

As a giant backhoe removed the final pieces of the sandy dam around sunset, onlookers reveled as the tide flowed into the wetlands, some snapping monumental photos and others scoping out the first fish making their way into the wetlands.

“I wouldn’t have missed this for anything,” said Del Mar City Councilwoman Lee Haydu, who said she’s lived near the lagoon since the early 1980s and sees it every day. “It’s so different now that they’ve started the restoration. The lagoon is so much healthier.”

Related posts:

  1. San Dieguito Wetlands Restoration enters home stretch
  2. Opinion: San Dieguito Lagoon restoration nears completion
  3. Fish population soars at wetlands lagoon
  4. Wetlands milestone marked
  5. River bridge to be retrofitted

Short URL: http://www.delmartimes.net/?p=27825

Posted by Lorine Wright on Oct 3, 2011. Filed under Del Mar, Featured Story, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Leave a Reply

Archives

Facebook

Bottom Buttons 1

Bottom Buttons 2

Bottom Buttons 3

Bottom Buttons 4

Bottom Buttons 5

Bottom Buttons 6

LA JOLLA NEWS

RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

RSS RANCHO SANTA FE NEWS

  • Free Tennis and PickleBall offered at Rancho Santa Fe Tennis Club during Rancho Days
    Rancho Days is now Rancho Tennis Days at the Rancho Santa Fe Tennis Club. During the 10 days of Rancho Days (Oct. 3-12) the RSF Tennis Club is offering all Covenant-area residents free tennis. This includes many free clinics for all levels, free court time (just sign up at the front desk or call 858-756-4459) and free entry to the end of week mixed tennis to […]
  • Rancho Santa Big Band Orchestra to swing at Village Church
    Big band music blows into the Ranch from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 9, at the Village Church, 6225 Paseo Delicias. The Rancho Santa Fe Big Band Swing Orchestra, a 17-piece outfit led by professor and former president of the San Diego Musicians’ Association Jack Wheaton, featuring producer and trumpeter Dominick Addario, vocalist and events coordinator Marie […]
  • Auditions to be held at Village Church in Rancho Santa Fe for ‘Rented Christmas’ musical
    The Village Church Community Theater recently announced auditions for “Rented Christmas, the Musical,” from 6-8 p.m. Monday, Oct. 6 and Tuesday, Oct. 7 at the Village Community Church, 6225 Paseo Delicias in Rancho Santa Fe. […]