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E4: Upper Penitencia Creek Flood Protection

Preferred project: A federal-state-local partnership

This project continues a partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to plan, design and construct improvements along 4.2 miles of Upper Penitencia Creek from the confluence with Coyote Creek to Dorel Drive. The project is also funded in partnership with the state. Part of the project must be completed prior to a planned Silicon Valley Rapid Transit extension to the Bay Area Rapid Transit line, to protect the area around the proposed Berryessa station near King Road, which would otherwise be subject to flooding.

The natural creek channel will be preserved while adjacent existing open space and parkland will remain as recreational areas, only rarely taking the role as a temporary floodplain so that floodwaters do not enter surrounding neighborhoods and commercial areas. Proposed construction measures may include modified floodplains, levees, flood walls, bypass channels, and fish passage improvements. Existing District water supply facilities may also be modified to protect habitat and improve water supply reliability.

The $41.9 million in local funding from Safe, Clean Water allows the District to move ahead with the planning, design and construction of the project. 


  • Preferred project provides 1% flood protection to approximately 5,000 homes, schools and businesses. Locally-funded-only project provides 1% flood protection to the proposed rapid transit station and areas downstream from King Road.
  • Reduces sedimentation and maintenance requirements
  • Improves water quality in Coyote Creek
  • Provides opportunities for recreation improvements consistent with the City of San José and Santa Clara County Park master plans

Project Status

(As of September2017)


  1. No federal funding provided for USACE for this project for 2017.
  2. District continues working  local-option planning study with new planning team.
  3. District partnered with the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI) to conduct a landscape concept workshop to develop alternatives in line with the Integrated Water Resources Planning effort (One Water). SFEI developed a memo summarizing the workshop presentations and findings.
  4. District continues working on the Problem Definition Report and Communication Plan. 

Key Performance Indicators

  1. Preferred project with federal and local funding: Construct a flood protection project to provide 1% flood protection to 5,000 homes, businesses and public buildings. 

  2. With local funding only: Acquire all necessary rights-of-way and construct a 1% flood protection project from Coyote Creek confluence to King Road. 




Priority E-200

FY17 Annual Report Status

StatusOn Target
Project StartFY 2016
Project FinishFY 2026
Safe Clean Water
Program funding

$48.9 M**

(2015 Dollars)

**More financial information: 5-Year Implementation Plan, pages: 19-27
LocationSan José 

For more information:


/uploadedImages/Programs/Safe_Clean_Water_and_Natural_Flood_Protection/Priority_E/Inundation_Map_(100 yr).png
Inundation Map (100 yr) 
(Click to enlarge)


 /uploadedImages/Programs/Safe_Clean_Water_and_Natural_Flood_Protection/Priority_E/UP Inundation Map (100yr).png 
UP Inundation Map (100yr) 
(Click to enlarge)