Location: Oceanside, California
Recent developments in the vicinity of Pilgrim Creek brought human population in close contact with a mosquito breeding habitat, thus increasing the risk of vector-borne diseases. The proposed solution included the removal of low water crossings, clogged culverts, gradual slopes, reed monocultures, and exotic species and construction of an open water system with sleep slopes, bridge crossings, and native riparian species. By restoring the creek to proper flood conveyance, the vector habitat would be eliminated. Michael Baker International prepared comprehensive topographic survey and hydraulic studies for the design feasibility study, along with an initial study/environmental checklist to support the California Environmental Quality (CEQA) clearance process. Michael Baker delineated the project site and prepared a biological habitat assessment that addressed multiple habitat conservation plans. Biological focus surveys were completed for the least Bell’s vireo, southwestern willow flycatcher, and coastal California gnatcatchers. Phase II of the project is underway and includes CEQA documentation, final design, and regulatory permitting.