Ross Valley Sanitary District Shady Lane Abandoned Sewer and Barrier Removal Project

Project Lead: Ross Valley Sanitary District

Location of Project: 37.5815, -122.3339

Description of Project:

This project will remove the first barrier migrating steelhead encounter by removing a 21-inch abandoned sewer line encased in concrete which is currently resting on the bed of Ross Creek. 700-feet below the project site Ross Creek joins San Anselmo Creek to form Corte Madera Creek.  This remediation will provide passage for juvenile steelhead, as well as younger age classes between Corte Madera Creek and 8,000-lf of the Ross Creek stream channel accessible upstream. The concrete casing forms a 3.5ft dam in the bed of the creek, and is a barrier to most juvenile steelhead seeking summer rearing habitat or to smolts attempting to leave the creek. Removing the barrier by replacing the abandoned sewer line and concrete encasement with a natural channel bottom composed of native channel bed material of course cobble and boulders will restore access to 30-lf of stream miles and 1,500 ft2 of habitat. This will restore the riparian canopy and promote lower water temperatures in the summer, as well as provide access to deep pools and areas with structures that provide high-flow refugia in the winter and thermal refugia in the summer both up and downstream of the exposed sewer line.

Partners include Town of Ross, Friends of Corte Madera Creek Watershed, and Marine Resource Conservation District (RCD).