Friday December 2, 2022

Mendocino Voice

Fort Bragg City Council unanimously approved a plan Monday night to purchase a 582-acre parcel of land from Mendocino Coast Recreation and Park District for $2,420,579, to build three reservoirs on around 30 acres. The city hopes to establish a community forest on the remaining 550 acres of land, preserving the habitat there through a deed restriction or conservation easement.

This vision would ensure the property is “utilized to every inch of its capacity,” councilmember Marcia Rafanan said ahead of the approval.

Fort Bragg hopes to install three reservoirs to store a potential total of 44 million gallons of water, in a location that connects conveniently to treatment plant infrastructure and high-power PG&E transmission lines. The city would rely on its existing water sources — Waterfall Gulch, Newman Gulch, and the Noyo River — to fill these tanks, particularly during high flow periods in the winter months. Catchments for rainwater would also be included.

Public Works Director John Smith brought the plan forward after exploring a number of options for properties to house increased water storage. He explained that Fort Bragg is going to be “increasingly dependent on stored water” in the coming years.

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