Santa Monica Clean Beaches

The City of Santa Monica’s Clean Beaches Project for Pier Drainage Basin has Received the Envision Gold Award

The City of Santa Monica’s Clean Beaches Project for Pier Drainage Basin received the Envision Gold award for sustainable infrastructure, designated by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI). To earn a Gold award, a project must demonstrate that it delivers a heightened range of environmental, social, and economic benefits.

Santa Monica Pier was ranked as one of the dirtiest beaches in California after a bacterial study was conducted in 2015. The Clean Beaches Project was delivered to improve beach water quality and increase the city’s drought resiliency by increasing the diversion capacity at the Santa Monica Pier storm drain outfall. The project consists of a flow diversion structure to direct stormwater and urban runoff from the Pier watershed into a subsurface facility beneath Ocean Front Walk. This subsurface storage facility is designed to hold 1.6 million gallons of water, which is equivalent to an 85th percentile storm event (a storm event whose total precipitation is greater than or equal to 85 percent of all storm events in the contributing drainage area over a given period of time). Harvested water will be diverted for treatment at the Santa Monica Urban Runoff Recycling Facility (SMURRF) and distributed for non-potable water uses throughout the city. The project also includes the construction of a new parking lot facility for visiting beachgoers.

The $15 million Clean Beaches Project was partially funded by the California State Water Resources Control Board Clean Beaches Initiative Grant Program, with a local match from the City Clean Beaches and Oceans Parcel Tax, “Measure V” which was passed with over two-thirds of the city’s voting residents voting in its favor.

The City of Santa Monica worked in close collaboration with the California State Water Resources Board, Tetra Tech, and Reyes Construction to deliver this award-winning sustainable project.

The Envision system examines the impact of sustainable infrastructure projects, through five distinct categories: Quality of Life, Leadership, Resource Allocation, Natural World, and Climate and Resilience. These key areas contribute to the positive social, economic, and environmental impacts on a community.

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