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Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project

Project URL link
Sponsoring Agency East Bay Regional Park District
Subregions ('East Bay',)
Counties Alameda
Watershed Tributary Codornices Creek
Public or private land? ('Public',)
Location (lat/lon) 37.88893, -122.31676
Start Date 4/1/13
End Date 12/31/16
Location Description The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project is located on San Francisco Bay, in the city of Albany, Alameda County, California, and is a part of Eastshore State Park. The project is located at the end of Buchanan Drive just north of Golden Gate Fields Race Track.
Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project

The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project is located on San Francisco Bay, in the city of Albany, Alameda County, California, and is a part of Eastshore State Park. The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project - consists of shoreline repair and reconstruction, habitat enhancement, beach renovation, recreational amenities, and construction of San Francisco Bay Trail public access improvements. The project will repair and reconstruct 2,000 feet of shoreline along the Albany Neck shoreline and install accessibility improvements. In addition, the project includes beach and dune enhancement, recreation improvements, restroom, parking and construction of 800 feet of new San Francisco Bay Trail adjacent Albany Beach.

The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project is located on San Francisco Bay, in the city of Albany, Alameda County, California, and is a part of Eastshore State Park. The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project - consists of shoreline repair and reconstruction, habitat enhancement, beach renovation, recreational amenities, and construction of San Francisco Bay Trail public access improvements. The project will repair and reconstruct 2,000 feet of eroding shoreline along the Albany Neck shoreline and install accessibility improvements. In addition, the project includes beach and dune enhancement, recreation improvements, restroom, parking and construction of 800 feet of new San Francisco Bay Trail adjacent Albany Beach.

Drinking Water Supply
Water Quality Improvement
Water Reuse/Recycling
Stormwater Improvements
Groundwater Benefits
Habitat Protection and Restoration
Flood Protection
Water Quality: Prevent erosion in to Bay, treat stormwater runoff and protect landfill. Stormwater Improvements: Treat stromwater runoff, protect against storm surge and sea level rise. Habitat Protection: Dune enhancement, living shoreline, topographically diverse intertidal shoreline. Flood Protection: Protects landfill, protects against storm surge and sea level rise. Related to a Disadvantaged Community: Disadvantage community around Codornice Creek in Albany.
The project is within multi-jurisdictional boundaries and will integrate site management programs: the function and sustainability of the existing beach and dunes are influenced and potentially enhanced by land use and physical conditions adjacent to the site. Coordination between the multiple jurisdictions that control and define the site presents an opportunity for integrated planning and management programs that support more comprehensive resource enhancement actions and sustainable, regional scale solutions for shoreline protection, habitat enhancement and public access. Shared goals between the District, City of Albany, State Parks and Recreation and private owners as well as appropriate regulatory/resource agencies will inform long-term planning. These shared goals include habitat conservation and enhancement, water quality protection and enhancement, public safety, and public access/recreation.
Construction of additional SF Bay Trail and establishment of the site as a San Francisco Bay Water Trail site would improve the transportation and recreational benefits of the project.
Yes. EBPRD's $125 million WW Local Grant Program is available to neighboring Cities for use on a collaborative project with the Albany Beach project.
The project will reduce impervious surfaces onsite from 2.8-acres to 0.6 acres. In addition, stormwater management activities will include creation of bioswales and treatment ponds to manage and treat on-site runoff from impervious surfaces. An existing seasonal wetland onsite will be enlarged and enhanced onsite and will receive most of the stormwater generated from the project.

Part 2 - Detail

The Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project - consists of shoreline repair and reconstruction, habitat enhancement, beach renovation, recreational amenities, and construction of San Francisco Bay Trail public access improvements. The project will repair and reconstruction and install accessibility improvements to 2,000 feet of shoreline along the Albany Neck shoreline. In addition, the project will include beach and dune enhancement, recreation improvements, restroom, parking and construction of 800 feet of new San Francisco Bay Trail at Albany Beach.

The Albany Neck shoreline reconstruction will include removal of debris including concrete and metal rubble, possible recontouring shoreline slopes to create intertidal and subtidal habitat, placement of stabilized rock toe and slope protection, shoreline rock, soil and geotextile fabric placement, and planting native grasses and shrubs on upper slopes. The goal is to minimize bay fill to only that which is required to maintain public and emergency vehicle access along the south Neck and for beneficial habitat enhancement and needed shoreline stabilization. Removal of debris, including broken concrete, asphalt, and metal rubble along the existing trail, grading of trail to provide positive drainage, placement of permeable trail surface to meet accessibility guidelines along Albany Neck; and earthwork to grade an ADA compliant access to the sandy beach. Removal of nonnative invasive species adjacent to trail, planting new native grasses and shrubs, and installation of post and cable fence to limit access to restored planting areas and steep shoreline slopes.  

The Albany Beach restoration and dune enhancement will included removing treated wood, inorganic debris and invasive plants at beach area, demolition of a 2.8-acre paved parking area, sand placement to help support a broad low-profile beach, and support existing and expanded dune features and adapt to anticipated conditions under sea level rise. Approximately 2,000 cubic yards of carefully selected clean sand would be placed on the beach above the line of highest tide, and an additional 3,000 cubic yards placed to enhance and expand the dunes within the existing parking lot. The dunes would be stabilized using native dune vegetation. The project expands existing seasonally inundated wetlands and plants them with native vegetation and removes invasive plants and inorganic debris from wetlands. Stormwater management activities comprises earthwork to create bioswales and ponding areas to manage and treat on-site runoff from impervious surfaces. A major portion of this would be routed through the enhanced seasonal wetlands. Parking and Water Trail access includes facilities for non-motorized watercraft, 20-stall parking lot to provide ADA access, and non-motorized watercraft access and staging, dual vault-type restroom, bicycle racks, picnic benches, park signage, and interpretive exhibits and the reconstruction of existing trail at Albany Peninsula as ADA accessible trail (San Francisco Bay Trail Spur).



Eastshore State Park General Plan,


East Bay Regional Park District Master Plan,

City of Albany General Plan,

San Francisco Bay Subtidal Habitat Goals Report


San Francisco Bay Area Water Trail Plan,

Coastal Conservancy San Francisco Bay Plan,

San Francisco Bay Trail Plan,

Baylands Ecosystem Habitat Goals Report Recommendations,

San Francisco Estuary Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan

California State Coastal Conservancy Strategic Plan 2007,


Albany Beach Restoration and Public Access Project Draft Environmental Impact Report and Project Information,


Bay Conservation and Development Commission Bay Plan, 

SF Bay

The site was used for urban landfill from the 1950s to the early 1980s, with fill consisting mainly of construction debris containing concrete, asphalt, metals and foundry slag. Currently, the shoreline is lined with large chunks of rubble, deep voids between pieces of debris, and expanses of loose soil adjacent to and eroding into San Francisco Bay. The restoration project, located in a cove along the southern portion of an area known as the Albany Neck, will produce comprehensive shoreline stabilization which will reduce erosion and sedimentation into the Bay, thereby improving water quality, and create and enhance rocky intertidal habitat along the south side of Albany Neck, provide sandy beach dune habitat improvements, expand and enhance wetlands, and provide improved public access.  The project places the highest priority for improvements on areas of observed erosion that potentially threaten water quality and stability of landfill areas. The site, acquired in 1998 in partnership with California Department of Parks and Recreation, is subject to California Regional Water Quality Control Board's Order No. 98-072 (Board Order) which directed remediation of hazardous materials found in the landfill. Since the implementation of the Board Order in 1998, shoreline erosion has accelerated and now exposes undocumented landfill debris to wave action from the San Francisco Bay. The project will correct this condition by constructing a stabilized shoreline barrier that prevents discharge of wastes or hazardous substances to the San Francisco Bay. Project design will further develop hydro-dynamic modeling data developed in a feasibility study for the stabilization and protective barrier features to withstand 100-year sea level rise projections. Approximately 1,700 feet of shoreline will be improved by removing debris, including large rubble (concrete and asphalt) and hazardous objects and invasive vegetation. Rock clusters/groins will be placed to create a more topographically diverse intertidal shoreline and anchor pocket beaches. Rock clusters will stabilize and trap sand to help create and maintain new beach features and improve habitat values. Habitat design and function will account for anticipated sea-level rise and incorporate features that support desired habitat conditions for native rockweed (Fucus gardneri) which provides both physical habitat and food for fish, shorebirds and macro-invertebrates.  

The Neck is an armored and reflective (wave energy) feature which is actively eroding to varying degrees based on location and orientation as well as topographic and material conditions. An ad hoc mix of materials consisting of concrete, construction debris and rock armor the shoreline along the Neck. High wave runup and overtopping events induce erosion within the bank which damages the integrity of the nonengineered structure and threatens the upper sections of the slope including existing pathways. Specifically, the toe is eroding due to the reflection of incident wave energy. The reflected wave energy is focused onto the corner at the Beach. Portions of the existing trail and areas under consideration for future public access are impacted by the runup and overtopping events.

The current configuration and conditions of the shoreline along the southern edge of the Neck will not support proposed habitat enhancement and public access improvements over time. Erosion along the Neck shoreline will increase as sea level rises, which will allow larger waves to impact and degrade the Neck shoreline. Although the structure is fixed in place, the toe and crest of the Neck will experience greater rates and frequency of erosion by wave runup and overtopping. The trail behind the crest will also be susceptible to damage by wave overtopping.

The steep slopes located on the southern shoreline of the Neck are subject to erosion from both storm water runoff across the slope face and waves along the toe of slope. The surface of the Neck and Plateau is also subject to erosion from storm water runoff. Concrete and other construction debris can exacerbate erosion by concentrating and focusing flows onto less resistant materials leading to piping of soils through the fill matrix.

Relative sea level rise projections specific to the Albany shoreline should account for issues such as land subsidence rates as well as the range of uncertainty in selected sea level rise projections. The geologically young Bay Muds and fill materials on the Albany Peninsula are relatively ‘uncompacted’ and unsettled, which may lead to consolidation and settlement or subsidence over time on the order of 1.5 to 5 feet. Settlement at the Plateau, Neck and Bulb is expected to occur based upon two separate mechanisms: compression of debris fill and consolidation of Bay Mud. The compression of the fill is expected to occur due to raveling (movement of fine particles into voids), decomposition, chemical reactions, and compaction and consolidation due to self-weight of the fill. The consolidation of underlying Bay Mud is expected to occur due to the weight of the overlying fill. Settlement would most likely manifest itself as undulations on the ground surface.

It is estimated that the Plateau area will settle between 2 to 2.75 feet over the period from 1989 to 2039. Additional settlement could occur in the Plateau area due to new loads (additional fill or building loads) transferred to the underlying Bay Mud layer. In addition, subsidence will influence erosion risk and the suitability of soil types for specific restoration and improvement measures. Surface erosion is expected to be an ongoing geotechnical issue on the Bulb, Neck and Plateau.

 The primary threats to sensitive habitats in the study area are disturbance from public access (e.g., people and dogs) and sea level rise. Under existing conditions, the shoreline, beach and dunes have little or no room to adapt (move landward) in response to sea level rise. Protection of sensitive habitats within the Albany Beach study area will require protection measures that can be implemented immediately (e.g., fencing, signage) in combination with long-term approaches for managing these habitats over time with respect to sea level rise conditions (e.g., expansion, stabilization). Opportunities for preservation and protection of many of the sensitive habitats at Albany Beach are directly linked to suggested actions for shoreline protection and beach, dune and wetland expansion.


i. Water Supply (conservation, recycled water, groundwater recharge, surface storage, etc.)


ii. Water Quality

A goal of the proposed project design is to comply with Waste Discharge Requirement Order 98-072 issued by the Regional Board. To achieve compliance, implementation of the landfill shoreline stabilization and trail enhancement on Albany Neck will avoid landfill waste coming into contact with ponded water from any source; deposition of further waste deposited or stored at the site; or leachate from landfill waste and ponded water containing leachate or in contact with solid wastes from the landfill being discharged to waters of the State or United States.

The proposed project places a high priority on maintaining the landfill cap and avoiding water quality impacts to San Francisco Bay. Without comprehensive shoreline stabilization, future shoreline failure could cause erosion of landfill material into San Francisco Bay and violate the waste discharge requirements of Regional Water Quality Control Board Order.

Partial or patchy repair of eroded areas would contribute to shoreline weakness where repaired areas transition to non-engineered fill. These transitional points of contact over time will likely fail, causing erosion to spread to other areas. Failed areas would require continual maintenance and shoreline stabilization. Within areas of shoreline fill that were not properly engineered (i.e., existing condition) anticipated sea level rise will cause new areas of erosion and shoreline failure. A one-time comprehensive repair will be expensive but in the long term is more cost effective because patch repairs and substantial long-term maintenance burdens will be avoided.

Improve site drainage and water quality: direct surface runoff generated on the site through a system of bioswales or vegetated channels integrated with the existing back dune wetlands. Expansion of the wetland beyond the existing property boundary is an opportunity to increase storm water storage and passive treatment capacity. Stabilize eroding shoreline: stabilization of eroding shorelines is an opportunity to limit sedimentation and degradation of sensitive habitats. Improve stormwater drainage and trail surface: regrade the trail on the southern slope of the Neck to improve drainage and sediment control, direct surface runoff generated on the trail system to bioswales or vegetated channels for improved percolation and on-site treatment.

iii. Flood and Stormwater Management

Flood and stormwater management is about at the seaward edge of the trail, or the top of the armor. The roughness of the existing armor and rubble limits the height that the runup could potentially reach, but the trail is impacted and likely contributes to winnowing and erosion along the trail. Along the Beach significant flooding is expected. Although the runup is lower at the Beach because the slope is flatter, low areas and pathways through the dunes could cause significant flooding in and behind the dunes. Along the south shoreline the ground elevation is significantly lower than the runup elevation, and waves are expected to reach approximately 50 feet inland.

The estimates for total water level (TWL) will guide planning, evaluation and design of restoration and public access improvements for Albany Beach. Appropriate consideration of the future TWL conditions and influence on the site will also provide a framework for adaptive management and maintenance of the site.

iv. Resource Stewardship (watershed management, habitat protection and restoration, recreation, open space, etc.)

The project will protect the dune habitat at the Albany Beach by introducing fencing. Dune vegetation will be restored by removing noxious weeds (e.g., iceplant and Kikuyu grass) and planting locally native species that are adapted to this habitat, and explore the feasibility of re-introducing rare or endangered species that are native to the Bay Area, such as California seablite, San Francisco spineflower, and robust spineflower, to the dune area. The project will expand the dune areas behind the beach and protect and enhance eelgrass beds that exist off Albany Beach. It will Enhance beach/Bay access and create Bay Water Trail access for non-motorized watercraft by creating a vehicle drop-off and parking at the south end of the beach. Installation of park furnishings such as restrooms, benches and interpretive signage will significantly enhance the recreational experience of park visitors. An improved segment of the San Francisco Bay Trail adjacent the beach area will close a key gap in the San Francisco Bay Trail.

Increases Water Supply Reliability
Advances/ Expands Conjunctive Management of Multiple Water Supply Sources
Increases Water Use and/or Reuse Efficiency
Provides Additional Water Supply
Promotes Water Quality Protection
Reduces Water Demand
Advances/Expands Water Recycling
Promotes Urban Runoff Reuse
Addresses Sea Level Rise
Addresses other Anticipated Climate Change Impact (e.g. through water management system modifications)
Improves Flood Control (e.g. through wetlands restoration, management, protection)
Promotes Habitat Protection
Establishes Migration Corridors
Re-establishes River-Floodplain Hydrologic Continuity
Re-introduces Anadromous Fish Populations to Upper Watersheds
Enhances and Protects Upper Watershed Forests and Meadow Systems
Other (Please Describe)
Increases Water Use Efficiency or Promotes Energy-Efficient Water Demand Reduction
Improves Water System Energy Efficiency
Advances/Expands Water Recycling
Promotes Urban Runoff Reuse
Promotes Use of Renewable Energy Sources
Contributes to Carbon Sequestration (e.g. through vegetation growth)
Other (Please Describe)
2500000(low) - 4000000(high)
EBRPD WW and Cosco Busan Restoration
EBPRD General Fund
Drought Preparedness
Use and Reuse Water More Efficiently
Climate Change Response Actions (Adaptation to Climate Change, Reduction of Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Reduce Energy Consumption)
Expand Environmental Stewardship
Practice Integrated Flood Management
Protect Surface and Groundwater Quality
Improve Tribal Water and Natural Resources
Ensure Equitable Distribution of Benefits
Reduce Reliance on the Bay-Delta
Reduce Water Demand
Improved Operational Efficiency and Transfers
Increase Water Supply
Improve Water Quality
Improve Flood Management
Practice Resources Stewardship
Other Strategies (Please Describe)
Groundwater Management Plan
Urban Water Management Plan
Water Meter Requirements
Groundwater Monitoring Requirements
AB 1420 Compliance
BMP Compliance
CEQA Compliance
Water supply reliability, water conservation and water use efficiency
Stormwater capture, storage, clean-up, treatment, and management
Removal of invasive non-native species, the creation and enhancement of wetlands, and the acquisition, protection, and restoration of open space and watershed lands
Non-point source pollution reduction, management and monitoring
Groundwater recharge and management projects
Contaminant and salt removal through reclamation, desalting, and other treatment technologies and conveyance of reclaimed water for distribution to users
Water banking, exchange, reclamation and improvement of water quality
Planning and implementation of multipurpose flood management programs
Watershed protection and management
Drinking water treatment and distribution
Ecosystem and fisheries restoration and protection
Reduced Reliance on the Bay-Delta
Projects that directly address a critical water quality or supply issue in a DAC
Urban water suppliers implementing certain BMPs as on page 17 of Guidelines
Be designed to manage stormwater runoff to reduce flood damage (PRC §5096.827)
Be consistent with the applicable Regional Water Quality Control Plans (Basin Plans) (PRC §5096.827)
Not be a part of the State Plan of Flood Control (SPFC) (PRC §5096.827)

Establish a protective barrier separating landfill debris from high tide wave action, eliminate existing erosion and increased intertidal rockweed substrate and upland habitat protection on 1,700 linear feet of shoreline. Results will be documented by measuring linear feet of shoreline repaired and landfill protective barrier installed, and square feet of enhanced rock weed substrate created.

lncreased intertidal alga and non-invasive vegetative cover. The presence/absence of intertidal alga on newly created rocky shoreline substrate and upland transition vegetation will be documented.

lncreased data on intertidal and upland habitat restoration techniques for use at other shoreline project locations

lncreased application of "living shoreline" concepts for intertidal and subtidal rock habitats .

lncreased stewardship of estuarine ecosystems.


Project team

Part 3 - Benefits