Ballona Wetlands Restoration Planning

Location: Los Angeles County

Project Type: Restoration Planning

Status: Current

Habitat Type: estuarine wetland, marsh

Cost: $12,420,465

Area Affected: 600 acres

Assembly District: 53

Senate District: 28

Congressional District: 36

Project Lead/Grantee:
California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Teri Stewart, tstewart@dfg.ca.gov)

The Ballona Wetlands were once a 2,000-acre expanse of marshes, mud flats, salt pans, and sand dunes that stretched from Playa del Rey to Venice and inland to the Baldwin Hills. Today, only approximately 600 acres of open space remain of the former wetlands. A once-meandering Ballona Creek was cemented into a straight, concrete channel nearly 100 years ago and invasive plants now crowd out native plants, providing little sustenance for local wildlife. The land is owned by the State of California and comprises the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve.

Rooted in years of scientific research and guided by community input, the Ballona Wetlands Restoration Project will revive critical wetland habitat and offer a remarkable natural space for the public’s use and enjoyment. Restoring natural functions to the Reserve could heal this damaged landscape and create a thriving wildlife reserve and unique community asset, as has been accomplished with other wetland projects.

In 2009, the project partners completed the restoration feasibility study, which is available online at www.ballonarestoration.org.  Since 2010, the Department of Fish and Wildlife, with support from project partners, has been working on an Environmental Impact Report for the proposed project.  The Department hopes to finish the environmental review process in 2019 and begin the process of permitting the project.