Who We Are
Who We Are
The Alameda County Flood Control & Water Conservation District provides flood protection for Western Alameda County residents and businesses. Our mission is to support the public safety, health, and welfare of Western Alameda County’s communities.
The District plans, designs, constructs, and maintains flood control systems such as natural creeks, channels, levees, pump stations, dams, and reservoirs. We also care for the natural environment through public outreach and enforcement of pollution control regulations governing our waterways.
Message from the Director
Welcome to the new Alameda County Flood Control & Water Conservation District website.
We’re proud to present an overview of our organization, highlights of our important work to protect Western Alameda County from flooding, and examples of our efforts to maintain and enhance natural waterways in the region. We work hard to live up to our motto, “To Serve and Preserve Our Community.”
Learn about the District’s history and departments, our finances and capital improvement projects, floodplain management, important flood control and environmental restoration projects, our Clean Water Program, hydrology and hydraulics, and much more.
If you don’t find answers to your specific questions or concerns, please contact us at email@example.com.
Daniel Woldesenbet, PhD, PE
General Manager of the Alameda County Flood Control & Water Conservation District and Director of the Alameda County Public Works Agency
Did you know that much of Alameda County is in a floodplain? Up until the 1950s and 1960s, large swaths of the County often flooded. This caused businesses and schools to close, interrupted transportation and utility services, and sometimes took lives.
At the request of Alameda County residents, in 1949 the Alameda County Flood Control & Water Conservation District (District) was created by the California State Legislature. The primary purpose of the District is to build flood control infrastructure across the County (see District Act 205). Cities and unincorporated areas have joined the District over the years in order to gain protection from devastating floods.
As a result of the District’s work, former floodplains are now prime real estate for housing and Bay Area businesses.
Today, Alameda County’s flood control infrastructure protects nine zones in Western Alameda County. This includes pump stations, erosion control structures, dams, and hundreds of miles of pipelines, channels, levees, and creeks. We keep equipment up to date, keep flood control channels clear of silt and debris, and evaluate impacts of new developments on our creeks and channels.
In the 1980s, the District responded to the nation’s Clean Water Act. Today, Alameda County is a co-permittee that works with cities and counties around the Bay Area to improve stormwater quality before it reaches the San Francisco Bay.
Over the last decade, we’ve turned even greater attention to Alameda County’s natural environment by repairing local creeks damaged by erosion; returning channelized waterways to more natural conditions; adding parks, trails, and learning centers; and educating the public about the roles we can all take to create a healthier environment.
For more information on some of the leaders who helped make the District what it is today, please visit our Past District Leaders page.
The District is divided into four departments that each serve a unique function: Engineering, Maintenance and Operations, Construction and Development, and Management Services.
Many people confuse the Alameda County Flood Control District with the Alameda County Public Works Agency (which is part of the County of Alameda). Although these two agencies frequently overlap, they are actually two separate legal entities. The District relies on Alameda County Public Works Agency staff to carry out its mission, but there is no legal link between the two agencies.
The District collaborates with many partners and agencies on a wide variety of projects with mutual benefits.
Projects often involve complex and difficult decisions that may overlap with larger local or regional issues. Through these partnerships, the best-possible solutions to the County’s flooding issues are derived.
Each year, the District undertakes large and small projects to reduce the potential for local flooding, maintain our flood control infrastructure, preserve the environment, and prepare for communities’ future needs. We receive revenue from a variety of sources and use these funds for various flood control purposes. Any remaining funds are reserved for future projects. When the District was first formed, we sold bonds to pay for projects and retired those bonds with property tax revenue. Since then, we’ve funded projects on a pay-as-you-go basis.
For the most part, revenue generated within a flood control zone, including tax and benefit assessment monies received from properties within each zone, can only be spent within that zone. For details on the monies collected and spent, please see the District’s annual reports.
Capital Improvement Projects
The District is in a unique position to make a significant investment in our community’s future by improving the county’s flood control infrastructure. Our capital improvement program is focused specifically on planning, designing, and constructing projects that will enhance the economic and social well-being of our citizens.
The projects have been identified as necessary by the community, and by District staff through studies, inspections, and maintenance evaluations.
The capital improvement program includes a seven-year plan that is reviewed, revised, and updated annually. It reflects new projects and initiatives; funding availability; project priorities; and changes in project scope, cost, and schedule.
The duration of each capital project depends on its size and complexity. Typically, smaller projects can be delivered within a year, while larger, more complex projects may take several years from conception to construction. Over the course of any project, the scope, site conditions, funding sources, permit conditions, and other factors may vary. Therefore, the schedule and costs of the projects included in the capital improvement plan are subject to revision, especially for projects planned years in advance.