Don’t Rip Up the Delta! Tunnel Maps show the New Plan is the same as the Old Plan


The California Department of Water Resources (DWR, or “the State”) released limited detail with their recent Single Tunnel Notice of Preparation (NOP). But the map they did release is very worrisome.

Our new Tunnel Maps page under More Info… consolidates in one place the “new” Single Tunnel map, all of the old maps we have submitted over the years, plus we’ll add new maps as we receive them.

This blog is a review of the issues with WaterFix (which were backed up by expert testimonies). But before the Judge could rule in our behalf in the Spring of 2019, DWR took their WaterFix and ran. Now they are back with the same old plan. (And one new variation.) So let’s review the facts.

In the North Delta

There is virtually no change to three proposed tunnel intake locations that would destroy the historic community of Hood and significant impact to Clarksburg and Courtland. (Only two intakes would be built, but the State omitted sharing which two.) Delta representatives proved beyond the shadow of a doubt that WaterFix would be disastrous to those communities. The town of Hood would be overrun by pumps and construction for 13 years! Pile driving 24×7 would mean the kids in the Clarksburg school right across the river couldn’t hear their teachers voices for 13 years! Old historical communities like Locke could not withstand the vibrations of construction trucks roaring 24×7 down their narrow roads. The Delta Protection Committee said WaterFix would cause “blight” on these communities. Significant impact.

Condemnation.

What we deserve is details from the DWR about how this new plan would protect and enhance the historic legacy communities in the North.

In the South Delta

The State is still considering the destructive Through-Delta Alignment (now renamed the “Central Corridor”). STCDA brought expert witnesses to testify that the main highways throughout Contra Costa County would be gridlocked with construction trucks. The complete gridlock that would occur throughout CCC would make it impossible for Delta farmers to get their produce to market safely and would block products, services, and commuters from traveling between CCC and Stockton.


Check out the big rig stuck on Twin Cities Road. It’s one of the haul routes for the Delta tunnel. The Delta and its narrow levee highways are no place for construction trucks!

To compound the issues, the State planned to use barges throughout the waterways. The large tugs pushing the barges would require Delta bridges to open, such as Highway 4 that now doesn’t open would have approximately eight openings per day. The logistics of a huge construction project in an area of farm islands surrounded by waterways and minimal roads was obviously never studied by the DWR.


The Delta is no place for Construction and Cement Trucks – Wheels up!

Our maps specifically point out key waterways important for Delta boating and recreation coupled with the construction destruction maps in the WaterFix plan for those favorite waterways. We’ve repeatedly try to make the DWR consider favorite boating and recreation waterways and the impact of losing those to the boating communities in the Delta.

But the barges, huge docks, and 24×7 construction plan ignored testimonies that proved the barges and construction would basically shut down boating in the Delta for 13 years. Marinas would close, boaters would go elsewhere, boating and fishing communities would be economically ruined. This was proven. Yet their new plan has the old destructive Through-Delta route as one of the alternatives still on the table.

The State should review our maps, not ignore them

The Delta communities have spent ten years explaining to the DWR why their WaterFix plan was unconscionable. Now they are starting scoping meeting asking us to tell them once again?

To review the maps

Review the maps to be reminded why the Through-Delta or “Central Corridor” work will destroy the South Delta. Click Tunnel Maps page under More Info… This information has been part of STCDA’s formal comments and testimonies for ten years.

A new Eastern Corridor alternative?

The NOP includes a tunnel route further east, the “Eastern Corridor.” The details are missing on their map.

In Summary

The State owes us a report detailing that route and detailing the logistics of trucks and supplies to that new Eastern route: Will they still flood the waterways with barges and the small Delta levee roads with construction trucks? Or do they have a more viable construction plan. That is the information Delta communities deserve to hear from the DWR in the scoping meetings to know how bad the impacts are from an Eastern Route.

Regardless, there is no change between Central or Eastern route for the North Delta legacy communities (the intake locations are the same either way). And it is unclear how either route would affect Victoria Canal, one of the important recreational sloughs for the South Delta.

Public Scoping Meetings

The list of scoping meetings is maintained on our Event Tracker tab. They are also listed below.

Single Tunnel Public Scoping meetings are scheduled to take place at the following times and locations:

  • Monday, February 3, 2020, 1 p.m. – 3 p.m. California Environmental Protection Agency Building, 1001 I Street, Sacramento
  • Wednesday, February 5, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Junipero Serra State Building, 320 West Fourth Street, Los Angeles
  • Monday, February 10, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Jean Harvie Community Center, 14273 River Road, Walnut Grove
  • Wednesday, February 12, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Santa Clara Valley Water District Board Room, 5750 Almaden Expressway, San Jose
  • Thursday, February 13, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. San Joaquin Council of Governments Board Room, 555 Weber Avenue, Stockton
  • Wednesday, February 19, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Clarksburg Middle School Auditorium, 52870 Netherlands Road, Clarksburg
  • Thursday, February 20, 2020, 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. Brentwood Community Center Conference Room, 35 Oak Street, Brentwood

Anyone interested in more information concerning the EIR process, or anyone who has information concerning the study or suggestions as to significant issues, should contact Marcus Yee at (916) 651-6736

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