The Santa Clara Basin Stormwater Resource Plan (SWRP) is a planning document that uses a map-based approach to identify and prioritize local and regional Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) projects that can be implemented to improve local surface water quality through enhanced stormwater management. The development of the SWRP was funded by a Prop 1 grant from the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) to the Santa Clara Valley Water District (District).
The area addressed by the SWRP comprises the portion of the Santa Clara Basin within the boundaries of Santa Clara County. This area drains to San Francisco Bay and encompasses 13 local cities and towns, and four major sub-watersheds, including Coyote Creek, Guadalupe River, West Valley and Lower Peninsula watershed areas, in addition to the Baylands area.
The SWRP was developed by staff from the Santa Clara Valley Urban Runoff Pollution Prevention Program (SCVURPPP) and the District, as well as technical consultants needed for specific tasks. A Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) is providing technical support for SWRP development.
The SWRP development process includes active stakeholder involvement. Stakeholders from diverse local organizations, including not-for-profits, open space districts, and water supply/quality agencies are participating in the process.
The main products of the SWRP include:
- A map of opportunity areas for stormwater and dry weather runoff capture and use throughout the basin on a watershed basis;
- An initial prioritized list of potential multi-benefit GSI project opportunities; and
- Strategies for implementation of these and future project opportunities.
The SWRP categorizes projects opportunities into three categories: 1) parcel-based low impact development (LID) projects; 2) regional stormwater capture projects; and 3) green streets. For the purposes of the SWRP, LID projects are stormwater capture facilities that treat runoff generated from a publicly-owned parcel on that parcel. Regional stormwater capture projects capture and treat stormwater and dry weather runoff from off-site sources such as off-site surface runoff and diversions from storm drains, channels, culverts, and streams. Green street projects are stormwater and dry weather runoff capture opportunities in the public right-of-way that capture runoff from the street and adjacent areas that drain to the street.
Water Code section 10563, as amended by Senate Bill 985, requires a SWRP for municipalities that wish to receive State bond funding for stormwater and dry weather runoff capture projects. All project opportunities identified in the Santa Clara Basin SWRP will eligible to receive future grant funding.
The SWRP was coordinated with the District’s current efforts to develop its Integrated Water Resources Master Plan (“One Water” Plan). The One Water Plan aims to identify, prioritize and implement activities at a watershed scale to meet flood protection, water supply, water quality and environmental stewardship goals and objectives.
The SWRP will be submitted to the San Francisco Bay Area Integrated Regional Water Management Plan (IRWMP) Coordinating Committee and incorporated into the IRWMP as an addendum.