Valley Water is proud to recognize May 21–27, 2023 as National Public Works Week, a celebration of the tens of thousands of people in public service throughout North America who provide and maintain the infrastructure and services collectively known as public works. The theme of this year’s campaign is “Connecting the World Through Public Works.”
Valley Water has been a participating member of the American Public Works Association for over 40 years. Our agency’s staff and retirees have served on the board of the local South Bay Area Chapter and have volunteered their time in support of the association’s activities.
Our agency manages and operates a complex and integrated water supply infrastructure, including dams, reservoirs, pipelines, levees, pump stations, treatment plants and recycled water facilities. Here are some recent examples of Valley Water public works projects.
Anderson Dam Seismic Retrofit Project and Anderson Dam Tunnel Project
Valley Water is building a 1,700-foot-long tunnel next to Anderson Dam that will allow us to release more water safely during major storms or emergencies. This work is a significant milestone in our efforts to strengthen Anderson Dam and protect our communities.
Coyote Creek Flood Protection
This June, our agency will begin construction on the first of two flood protection projects located along a nine-mile stretch of Coyote Creek. Once completed, these projects will help protect homes, schools, businesses and highways in historically flood-prone areas. The measures we are implementing will protect against creek flows like the February 2017 flood, which was a 20-year event.
Hale Creek Enhancement Pilot Project
In coordination with San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board, this project includes removing about 650 feet of the concrete-lined channel and replacing it with a vegetated, earthen channel.
Rinconada Water Treatment Plant Residuals Remediation Project
Since 2015, Valley Water has significantly upgraded the Rinconada Water Treatment Plant to ensure it continues providing safe, clean drinking water for years to come. Valley Water is currently improving how the plant deals with sludge from the water treatment process, a project scheduled to conclude this summer.
San Francisco Bay Shoreline Phase I
In December 2021, Valley Water and its partners broke ground on the first portion of the South San Francisco Bay Shoreline Phase 1 Project. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is building the first section of the project’s coastal flood protection levee from Alviso Marina County Park to the Artesian Slough.
Once completed, this project will help reduce coastal flood risk for about 5,500 residents, commuters and businesses within the vicinity of Alviso and North San José. The project will also provide protection to the San José-Santa Clara Regional Wastewater facility and the Silicon Valley Advanced Water Purification Center.
Sunnyvale East/West Channel Improvements Project
The Sunnyvale East and West Channels were built in the 1960s by Valley Water as local storm drains with approximately a 10-year level of flood protection. The Sunnyvale West Channel is about three miles long and stretches from Maude Avenue to Guadalupe Slough. Sunnyvale East Channel is approximately 6 ½ miles long and stretches from Interstate 280 to Guadalupe Slough.
Once construction is completed, this project will protect 1,618 homes and 47 acres of industrial and government lands from a 100-year flood event.
Upper Llagas Creek Flood Protection
This project is designed to protect Morgan Hill from a major flood event. Valley Water is digging a tunnel underneath a stretch of downtown Morgan Hill, which once complete will help protect downtown from a 100-year flood, which has a 1% chance of happening in any given year.
The tunnel is part of the Upper Llagas Creek Flood Protection Project, which consists of approximately 13.9 miles of flood protection improvements along portions of East Little Llagas Creek, West Little Llagas Creek and Llagas Creek. The project is located within Gilroy, Morgan Hill and the unincorporated area of San Martin.
10-Year Pipeline Rehabilitation – Santa Clara Conduit Phase I
In March 2023, Valley Water completed the first phase of a shutdown and inspection of a large section of pipeline that delivers water from San Luis Reservoir into Santa Clara County. The pipeline, known as the Santa Clara Conduit, runs for about 22 miles from San Luis Reservoir off Highway 152 to the Coyote Pumping Plant in Morgan Hill. The pipeline, built in 1982 by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, is operated and maintained by Valley Water.