San Dieguito Lagoon Wetland Acquisition

Location: San Diego County

Project Type: Acquisition

Status: Completed

Habitat Type: tidal wetlands

Cost: $4,253,000

Area Affected: 75 acres

Assembly District: 78

Senate District: 39

Congressional District: 49

Project Lead/Grantee:
San Dieguito River Park JPA (Dick Bobertz 858-674-2275)

This project acquired 75 acres within the floodplain of the San Dieguito River, located east of and immediately adjacent to the 400-acre San Dieguito Wetland Restoration Project.

The property borders the San Dieguito River on the north, is a natural extension of the Wetland Restoration Project expands the project to the most eastern physical boundary, the public road El Camino Real. The property, which was used for agricultural production, has been partially designated as Multiple Habitat Plan Area (MHPA) in the City of San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Program (MSCP), is suitable for expanding the native grassland/seasonal salt marsh habitat areas of the Wetland Restoration Project and is a critical linkage to riparian habitat to the east.

The parcel is upstream and adjacent to the 400+ San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority (JPA) Wetland Restoration Project and downstream and adjacent to City of San Diego property that is proposed for wetland restoration. Historically, the property has been leased to farming interests that have used the property primarily for tomato production. The property owner had been in negotiations with an organization interested in building soccer fields for which there is a perceived unmet need in the region. Because of this pressure, the parcel is not expected to be available much longer. Construction of soccer fields on the parcel would require significant parking and possibly lighting and fill, all potential negative impacts to the adjacent Wetland Restoration Project. Construction of soccer fields or other development of the parcel would also eliminate the potential for linking the wetland restoration projects to the east and west. The project is to acquire in fee simple the entire 75 acre property in order to preserve it for future San Dieguito River Park restoration and enhancement. The property consists of two parcels: 304-020-16, 69.16 acres; and 304-020-13, 6.20 acres.