What is the Santa Clarita River Lake
Updated: Nov 14
Fresh water makes up only 4% of all the water on Earth, 3% is easy to get to…. so it is worth more than Gold. Let’s capture and store it in our river. Anaheim is captuing and storing stormwater on a large scale on the Santa Ana River, why not us on the Santa Clara River?
Storm Hilary on Saturday, August 21, 2023 dumped 6 inches of distilled, oxygen rich rain in Santa Clarita.
Hundreds of millions of gallons of fresh clean water flowed through our city and was lost.
Below is a stunning video of the Saugus Boquet Creek's roaring rapids located at the small Boquet Cyn. Bridge behined the Santa Clarita United Methodist Church.
Due to our recurring droughts followed by huge rain storms our changing weather patterns create an incredible opportunity to capture & store storm water quickly. We can capture, store and bank rain storm water for now and future generations.
This is currently being done in Tempe, Arizona called Tempe Town Lake, it is located near the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport. The project is known as the Rio Salado Master Plan. Their river used to be a dumping ground for trash and was a dry river bed most of the year. The project came about from a school project at ASU Arizona State University which is located nearby the river. Once a year the river would have a huge flood. The ASU plan envisioned a River Lake turning their river into a river lake flow over dam. Now it is a beautiful nature zone supporting birds, fish and recreation for its residents and is a heat sink for their very hot sumers.
The Tempe Town Lake also creates economic development that provides entertainment, restaurants & businesses that fund Tempe Town Lake and enriches their community. It is an incredible development for their area and a perfect mix of nature and development supporting each other.
This Picture below is our Valencia Bridge Water Fall behined Frontier Toyota.
The roar of the water is amazing to hear.
By using our Santa Clara River as a river and a lake we can capture 400 million gallons of water or 1,200 acre ft. from just 3 inches of rain in about 4 hours by using our Santa Clara River as a capture & store "Lake".
I am reminded that everything we have today began as some ones vision and their idea of achieving what seemed impossible at the time!
The photo below is the Santa Clara River dumping into the Pacific Ocean. You can walk to this location on the beach which is just below Ventura Harbor, just south of the 126. Just above to the right of photo is a Water Treatment Plant.
Draining into the Pacific Ocean in Ventura, CA
This is my vision: What is Storm Water Capture at City Scale?
We can use our Santa Clara River to capture 400 million gallons or 1,200 Acre Ft. of water by building a low level 12 ft. high (flow over) hydraulic dam (or) a less expensive Rubber Dam. Once the water hits 12 ft. it will spill over the dam and flow downstream a normal for the stakeholders downstream. During a big storm 1200 acre ft. of water is a small part of the water running downstream. If we have a 100 year flood the hydraulic dam or the Rubber Dam can be opened or lowered in 30 minutes and the river will flow as normal.
The water held back as a lake would create an awesome 90 acre lake at 12 ft. deep in our existing Riverbed in the center of our city. The dam location of a hydraulic dam or rubber dam would be built in front of the McBean Parkway Bridge.
The Santa Clara River is a mountain river and it flows very fast. 8 hours after a storm the riverbed is dry again becuse of the angle of decent.
The Santa Clara river would need to be leveled in this 90 acre area so it can hold water long enough to percolate into our Saugus Aquifer. The aquifer starts in Saugus and ends at the Blue Cut which is down the 126 just before the Ventura County Line. The Blue Cut is a natural underground dam that creates a huge underground aquifer.
To create a capture an storage lake The Santa Clara River will need to be leveled in two areas;
1. stretching to the baseball fields and 2. stretching to Frontier Toyota at the Valencia Bridge waterfall as pictured above. Then it will hold a huge amount of storm water for our residents.
The pciture below is the Santa Clara River after the Boquet Cyn. Bridge...
The cost is estimated is varied depending on whether we build a hydraulic Dam of Rubber Dam and we need to have a feasibility study done.
Help would be needed from: Army Corps of Engineers (ACE), California Fish & Wildlife, Los Angeles County, City of Santa Clarita, Federal & State Grants & Local Private Corporations.
This process is known as a PPP, a Public Private Partnership. The location of the dam was chosen because this location intersects our three largest rivers; Bouquet Creek - from Saugus, South Fork - from Newhall and the Santa Clara River which begins in Acton up the 14 freeway. This area of the Santa Clara riverbed will require it to be leveled because it is a mountain river which means the angle of decent is steep. This is why our river dries up so quickly after a rain storm because most of the water flushes right through our city, Filmore, Santa Paula and then into the Pacific Ocean.
Large scale water storage and water banking is needed now for the Santa Clarita Valley. The Santa Clarita River Lake can be used in two different ways:
1) Percolate into our underground Aquifer so we can bank water for our wells and reduce our reliance on imported water. The lake would last about 3 months and make our community more self sufficient by banking water undergound in our aquifers. We have wells that pump water from under the Santa Clara River.
2) We can create a permanent River Lake by sealing the lake bottom. This would provide year round recreation for our residents, habitat for bird migration and home for our endangered species; Spade Foot Toad, Arroyo Toad and 3 Spine Unarmored Stickle Back Fish. By having a flow over dam the water flows down stream as normal. We hold back a small percentage of the water that flows down the river and eventually drains into the Pacific Ocean in Ventura.
Thank you for reading about my project vision for the Santa Clarita Valley.
John Pramik Join us in our project vision by supporting us. Share us on social media and then sign up on our website. www.SantaClaritaRiverLake.com