San Geronimo Valley Planning Group

Lagunitas Creek Restoration Project Gets Boost from Federal  Grant

Good news from MMWD regarding the continuing restoration of Lagunitas Creek to enhance spawning habitat.  

A Marin Water effort to protect Coho salmon and steelhead trout populations received a significant boost in July, 2022, earning a U.S. Bureau of Reclamation WaterSMART grant to enhance spawning habitat within the Lagunitas Creek watershed.  

The $1.4 million grant is the first WaterSMART grant Marin Water has earned, and it will ensure work on the first phase of the restoration project can be completed at key parts of Lagunitas Creek.  

Due in part to a series of dams throughout the 83-square-mile Lagunitas Creek Watershed, critical spawning habitat for Coho salmon and steelhead trout has been reduced over time. The restoration program envisioned by Marin Water would install wood structures and add gravel habitat at sites along Lagunitas Creek to enhance resiliency of aquatic wildlife in the watershed.  

The district has received nearly $1.2 million thus far from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to advance the engineering, designs and environmental review for this work. The total construction cost of the restoration effort is estimated at $7.5 million and is expected to begin in 2024.   Read more about this ten-year, multi-million dollar project.

“Wild salmon are a barometer of the planet’s health. They can survive only in clean, cool water,

and their presence in a river has traditionally signaled to anglers that the water is safe to drink.

They embody the idea of a keystone species, the animal whose existence

holds the rest of the ecosystem together.”

(from the book, Salmon Wars: The Dark Underbelly of Our Favorite Fish, by Douglas Frantz and Catherine Collins)