For more than five years, the City of Belvedere has been actively studying the risks to our two levees posed by flooding and seismic activity.

In May 2019, the City convened a new committee – the Committee to Protect Belvedere’s Seawalls, Levees, and Utilities – to study solutions to protect these critical assets. The Committee, comprising eleven Belvedere residents, met four times during 2019/early 2020 and heard from an array of experts.

The Committee agreed that the levees should be reinforced with sheet-piling to mitigate seismic activity, and that flood walls should be placed along Beach Road and San Rafael Avenue (extending into West Shore Road). It recommended that the flood walls be designed to allow height to be added in the future as sea levels rise. It also gave input on proposed design elements of the project. The Committee agreed to defer action on the less-pressing flood risk emanating from Tiburon Main Street.

In early 2020, the City also undertook a public outreach and comment period, seeking broader public input on the initial design plans.

Location of Proposed Flood Barriers

During spring/summer 2020, the City’s lead engineering partner, Stetson Engineering, worked to adjust the design concepts to respond to public sentiment, paying particular attention to cost considerations and concerns about trade-offs (such as reduced roadway widths and loss of parking). Staff also reached out to key stakeholders to get their input on the revised concepts.

After a long hiatus, the Committee reconvened in late August 2020 to study the new design concepts. The Staff Report for the meeting, which explains the design modifications and provides costing, can be viewed here. The plans were positively received by the Committee which recommended that Stetson Engineering move forward with developing next-level design plans and costing, and that staff consult with regulatory agencies and utility providers about associated issues.

The new schematics are shown below.

The estimated project cost is $20.1 million.

San Rafael Avenue Barrier

West Shore Extension to San Rafael Avenue Barrier

Beach Road Barrier

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