San Elijo Lagoon Welcomes Restoration and Growth
Reviving the Wetlands
Major things are happening for the San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy. In November, the Conservancy, San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), and Caltrans joined state and local leaders at the San Elijo Lagoon Nature Center in Encinitas to break ground on a $102 million restoration project. The San Elijo Lagoon Restoration Project, also known as the Reviving Your Wetlands Project, is part of the first phase of construction for the North Coast Corridor (NCC) Program, known as Build NCC. This first phase of the three-year effort will include: clearing vegetation and constructing a series of dikes along the main lagoon channel and inlet; creating a 40-foot deep overdredge pit in the central basin, from which sand will be removed and used for beach sand replenishment at Fletcher Cove and Cardiff State Beach; and refilling the overdredge pit with lagoon sediment.
“You are going to see the start of efforts that have been 20 years in the making,” said Doug Gibson, San Elijo Lagoon Conservancy Executive Director and Principal Scientist. “Our work will improve tidal circulation in the lagoon and enhance the lagoon’s habitat in order to ensure prosperity and longevity for many of the lagoon’s native plants and animals.”
The Conservancy also recently acquired 77 acres of land located in coastal upland Encinitas, that will connect parts of Encinitas to eight miles of trails within the San Elijo Lagoon Ecological Reserve. The acquisition was made possible by a generous donation from Solana Beach resident and Conservancy supporter Ann Dunne. Beginning in 2018, the Conservancy’s restoration staff will work with community volunteers to restore the property for native plants and animals and to establish trail connections for people. For more information go to www.sanelijo.org.