Location: Latitude: 37.997110 Longitude: -122.286179
Purpose: This project will restore access to the upper reaches of Pinole Creek for the current population of Central California Coast Steelhead by modifying the existing box culverts where Pinole Creek passes under Interstate Highway 80 (I-80). Habitat assessments conducted on Pinole Creek in 2009 indicate sufficient habitat to support anadromous steelhead spawning and rearing if passage issues at the I-80 culvert are remedied. This project will improve access to nearly 7 miles of documented quality steelhead spawning and rearing habitat on the main stem of Pinole Creek.
Work Performed: The nearly 400-foot long Caltrans I-80 double-bay box culvert on Pinole Creek creates a severe barrier to upstream passage of juvenile and adult steelhead trout. The culvert slope and shape lack sufficient water depth and produces excessive water velocities at fish migration flows. This culvert crossing, located only 1.5 miles upstream of San Pablo Bay, is the only substantial barrier preventing anadromous steelhead from reaching the high quality spawning and rearing habitat found in the upper watershed. Analysis using FishXing software has demonstrated that this culvert presents a migration barrier to adult and juvenile steelhead at all flows. Pinole Creek has regional significance as one of only a small handful of viable steelhead runs within San Francisco and San Pablo Bays. The I-80 culvert is the only significant barrier to fish passage on Pinole Creek.
Monitoring in the upper watershed has indicated steelhead presence only twice in the past 12 years (2002 and 2011). Each year that steelhead cannot reach the spawning habitat in Upper Pinole Creek is a lost opportunity to recover and sustain these populations.
Contra Costa Resource Conservation District, Friends of Pinole Creek Watershed, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, California Coastal Conservancy, NOAA, California Water Boards, Natural Resources Conservation Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Contra Costa County Flood Control and Water Conservation District, Caltrans, Contra Costa Fish and Wildlife Committee, City of Pinole, East Bay Municipal District, and the California Fish Passage Forum.
|Project Development and Construction Designs||$121,543|
|Environmental Review (CEQA/NEPA)||$3,000|
|Federal Contract Administration and Review Fees||$20,000|
Downstream extent of culvert retrofit. Concrete blocks in foreground from removal of old culvert floor to allow new low-flow channel to be poured.
View from downstream of Pinole Creek Fish Passage Project. Forms in place for completion of a downstream training wall and streamflow currently routed through pipe in north culvert.
About halfway through the south culvert looking upstream at newly poured culvert floor with low-flow channel.
Same position as previous picture, looking downstream. This portion of the culvert will be backwatered by downstream control weir - no need for continued low-flow channel.
Upstream extent of low-flow channel and forms in place for the first three of 18 weirs within the channel, which will improve flow conditions for fish passage.
Downstream view from below downstream culvert apron. Once construction is completed in culvert, this section will be excavated and replaced with engineered streambed material.