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Creek restoration is an important part of the Creeks Division's mission to improve creek health and water quality within the City of Santa Barbara. Goals for restoration projects include increasing native riparian (creek side) vegetation and wildlife habitat, removing invasive plants, aesthetic improvements to parks and open space, and better water quality through shading, bank stabilization and erosion control, natural infiltration, plant uptake of nutrients, and evapotranspiration.

These large capital projects involve reconstruction of creeks and wetlands to more natural/historic conditions through the reshaping of creek channels, removal of aging infrastructure, management of invasive species, and installation of native plants/trees. Learn more about our projects below.

Current and Upcoming Projects

Grassy field and trees at the Palermo Open Space
In December 2019, the Creeks Division purchased two properties along Arroyo Burro at the end of Palermo Road, currently referred to as the…
Mission Creek at Oak Park
In 2022, the Creeks Division began initial design work on the upcoming Mission Creek Restoration at Oak Park. The project will take place along an 1,800 foot reach of Mission Creek that flows through the City-owned Oak Park. This reach of…

Completed Projects

Andrée Clark Bird Refuge
Construction of the Andrée Clark Bird Refuge Restoration Project was completed in early 2023. The project included replacement of the weir gate at Cabrillo Boulevard with an improved design, construction of an upstream treatment wetland at…
Native plants and trees surround the Arroyo Burro Estuary.
Located at the end of the Arroyo Burro County Beach Park parking area and within the Douglas Family Preserve, the Arroyo Burro Estuary and Mesa Creek Restoration Project was designed to restore coastal estuarine, riparian and coastal sage…
ABOS
In February 2016, the Creeks Division collaborated with the Trust for Public Land to acquire the former Veronica Meadows development site. Acquisition of this 14.7-acre parcel along Arroyo Burro created a new open space park and…
Western Sycamore Tree located in the creek bed
The Creeks Division's Arroyo Burro Restoration Project at Hidden Valley Park was completed in late 2018. The 2.8-acre project site was previously in a degraded state, with hundreds of feet of pipe and wire revetment in the creek and on the…
Honda Valley Creek at Honda Valley Park
The Creeks Division completed a restoration of Arroyo Honda at Honda Valley Park in 2021. The project included removal of approximately 1,000 square feet of asphalt from the creek bed, removal of over 650 linear feet of chain link fence,…
Mission Creek Fish Passage.jpg
The endangered Southern California steelhead trout is native to Santa Barbara’s coastal streams, including Mission Creek. Steelhead are born in freshwater streams/rivers, where they typically spend their first year, then migrate to the…
Rock crossing of Old Mission Creek at Bohnett Park
In 2003, the Creeks Division completed a restoration project along Old Mission Creek at Bohnett Park. The project included the construction of stairs and two creek crossings to improve access to the park. Creek banks were reconstructed to…
Barger Canyon.JPG
In late 2013, the Creeks Division purchased a 14.19-acre parcel on Foothill Road along Upper Arroyo Burro in Barger Canyon. The parcel was an environmentally sensitive and degraded site with approximately 1,800 linear feet of creek…
Upper Las Positas Creek.JPG
The Upper Las Positas Creek Restoration Project, completed in 2010, included the restoration of approximately eight acres of wetland habitat and an engineered storm water management system at the Santa Barbara Golf Club and Adams…