The City of San Marcos accepted a $1 million grant on Nov. 28 from the California Natural Resources Agency to help construct a portion of the San Marcos Creek District. The grant funds will help pay for construction of the Creekside Promenade, a nearly one-mile, multi-use trail that will meander along San Marcos Creek with open space areas and amenities. It will also restore more than three acres of adjacent riparian habitat through re-vegetation of native flora and stormwater management practices.
“This grant is another step in the right direction in terms of moving this project forward,” said City Manager Jack Griffin.
The San Marcos Creek District is a 214-acre comprehensive “downtown” plan for San Marcos that will include mixed-use development, a 73-acre habitat preserve, environmental enhancements, and infrastructure improvements like streets, parkways, bridges and flood control.
The San Marcos Creek District is centrally located within San Marcos. It is adjacent to San Marcos Boulevard, the City’s primary commercial corridor, and a mile or less from the San Marcos Town Center, Cal State San Marcos and Palomar College. The project is bounded on the north by San Marcos Boulevard, on the south and west by Discovery Street, and on the east by Grand Avenue and SR-78.
The City received the environmental permits necessary to move forward with the project in February 2012. Shortly thereafter, vegetation clearing began in order to prepare the site for the first phase of public infrastructure improvements between Bent Avenue and Via Vera Cruz. These improvements are in the final stage of design and include habitat restoration/expansion; installation of a flood wall and linear park along Discovery Street; widening of Discovery Street; construction of Creekside Drive; and construction of the Creekside Promenade.
The California Natural Resources Agency awarded more than $34 million in funding for 33 proposed river parkway projects statewide. The competitive grant program is administered by the secretary for natural resources and awards funds to public agencies and non-profit organizations to develop river parkways in their communities.
“The river parkway grants help communities connect residents with nature, promote public health by providing families with greater outdoor recreational opportunities and protect the rivers that provide clean water,” explained California Secretary for Natural Resources John Laird.