Buena Vista Lagoon Enhancement Project
Vista Lagoon is located in northern San Diego County, within the cities of
Oceanside and Carlsbad. It encompasses approximately 220 acres, extending to
the coastline from just east of I-5.
Vista Lagoon is the only freshwater lagoon in Southern California. It is protected
from tidal influence by a beach berm and a man-made barrier, known as a weir,
located at the lagoon mouth.
federal, state and local agencies and organizations have cooperated in efforts
to enhance the lagoon. In July 2012, SANDAG was asked to serve as the new lead
agency for the environmental review process for the Buena Vista Lagoon
Enhancement project. The SANDAG Transportation Committee approved the request,
in recognition of the lagoon’s regional value and the importance of resolving
long-term concerns regarding its caretaking.
Vista Lagoon Enhancement project includes completing engineering studies and
preparing an environmental impact report (EIR). Four alternatives have been
evaluated: three enhancement alternatives (freshwater, saltwater, and a
saltwater/freshwater hybrid), or a no project alternative.
communicated with federal and state agencies, the cities of Carlsbad and Oceanside,
stakeholders, and the public in considering alternatives through the EIR
In November 2018, the Final EIR was
presented to the SANDAG Board of Directors for certification. At the request of
the City of Carlsbad, a motion was approved to delay any action on the project
for six months to allow residents to reach a consensus on the enhancement
proposed modified saltwater alternative represents the result of this effort.
SANDAG has completed its engineering and environmental analyses, which can be
found under the “Documents” tab.
On Friday May 22, 2020, the SANDAG Board of Directors adopted a resolution to accept the modified saltwater alternative, which will allow the Buena Vista Lagoon to connect directly with ocean waters to flush out sediments. View the meeting agenda.
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