Daly City – Daly
City and San Francisco have approved the key terms
to future agreements intended to restore declining
Lake Merced, protect its underlying aquifer and
provide recycled water to adjacent golf courses.
A press conference will be held at 11 a.m.
on Thursday, October 25, in San Francisco City
Hall - Room 301. San Francisco Mayor Willie L.
Brown will join Daly City Councilmember and former
mayor Adrienne Tissier, along with San Francisco
Supervisor Tony Hall, to announce the historical
partnership. The Olympic Club, San Francisco Golf
and Country Club, and Lake Merced Golf and Country
Club, as well as the California Trout, a non-profit
environmental organization, will also be represented.
The City Council of Daly City and the San Francisco
Public Utilities Commission ratified the framework
of the agreements reflecting the three-part program.
"The agreement will mutually benefit our
communities," Councilmember Tissier stated.
"It took awhile to get all affected parties
at one table, sharing similar ideas and agreeing
on the same goals, but the result is something
we can be proud of. Because of this partnership,
future generations will be able to continue to
enjoy Lake Merced."
The multi-agency collaboration consists of a three-part
program, which includes channeling cleaned rainwater
back into Lake Merced from its historic southern
watershed. A pilot program is expected to begin
this rainy season.
The second component involves Daly City's treatment
facility located on Lake Merced Blvd. and John
Daly Blvd. The facility, which serves customers
in Daly City, Broadmoor, Colma and South San Francisco,
is currently designing a $4 million recycled water
facility to irrigate three adjacent golf courses:
the Olympic Club, San Francisco Golf and Country
Club, and Lake Merced Golf and Country Club, with
tertiary treated water. Recycled water would replace
the current practice of irrigating over 700 acres
of fairways and greens with wells drawing from
the Westside Basin Aquifer, an underground reservoir
that also serves a portion of the municipal drinking
water for the cities of San Bruno, Colma, South
San Francisco and Daly City. In addition to reducing
well pumping, the recycled water would itself
percolate back into the underlying aquifer. To
date, Daly City has spent over $2 million to study,
design, and test recycled water facilities and
construct conveyance pipelines.
The third component is generally described as
a "conjunctive use" program. During
unusually wet years, Daly City would limit its
pumping from the aquifer, purchasing instead the
available surplus water from the SFPUC's Hetch
Hetchy system, allowing the double benefit of
increased rainfall and reduced use to recharge
the Westside Basin Aquifer. During dry years,
Daly City would return to its local pumping, freeing
the limited Hetch Hetchy water to provide for
other regional water customers without reasonable
supply alternatives. Over time, the "conjunctive
use" program would consistently and gradually
enhance the Westside Basin Aquifer as a sustainable
Last April, Daly City was one of 64 agencies in
the state to apply for a grant under AB 303, which
provides financial support for addressing groundwater
issues. The $250,000 it subsequently received
was one of only 24 grants awarded in California.
The grant will allow the construction of two or
more monitoring wells to ensure against unanticipated
salt-water intrusion into the valuable aquifer.
"Much has been accomplished by the coalition,
but more is yet to be done," noted Councilmember
Tissier. "The challenges are certainly ahead
of us. With collaboration and mutual respect,
we can protect the Westside Basin Aquifer, we
will manage surface water with the groundwater,
and we will work to increase the water level in