Cerrito Creek is one of the principal watercourses running out of the Berkeley Hills into San Francisco Bay and forms the boundary between Alameda County and Contra Costa counties and between the cities of El Cerrito and Albany. The creek is named for Albany Hill, formerly called Cerrito de San Antonio and runs along the north side of the Hill. In the early 19th century, Cerrito Creek separated the vast Rancho San Antonio to the south from the Castro family's Rancho San Pablo to the north. Cerrito Creek, joined by a fan of other small creeks, formerly meandered to the Bay through a large marsh just north of the hill.
City of Albany Public Works Department is collaborating with the State of California Orientation Center for the Blind for the purpose of restoring the native riparian vegetation along a 300’ long, highly degraded section of Cerrito Creek from San Pablo Avenue to Adams Street. The City of Albany will restore the reach through an adaptive management approach to be implemented by non-profit partners over a five-year period.
The removal of invasive plant species, installation of erosion control treatments, and re-vegetation of native plant species will be conducted by the City’s non-profit contractor Urban Tilth, with support of their native plant experts and propagation nursery. The team will visit the site, two days per week, every other week, throughout the year. Work will start at San Pablo Avenue and proceed downstream incrementally. Small segments of the creek bank will be cleared of the invasive ground covers and treated with 100% biodegradable erosion control measures and re-planted with locally sourced native species. As subsequent bank segments are addressed, previous segments will receive continued weeding, watering and replacement of any mortalities. The regular site visits will also allow for continued project monitoring.
This project is intended to be implemented incrementally over a 5-year period with the majority of the invasive ground cover removal and re-vegetation occurring in the first three years. The last two years will focus on weeding, watering and in-fill planting to ensure full re-vegetation of the project site.
Current Project Status
The City of Albany is currently contracting with the non-profit Urban Tilth to conduct restoration work at Cerrito Creek. Current work includes installation of erosion and weed control infrastructure and native plantings on the south side of the creek, as well as invasive species removal on the north bank.
Urban Tilth will be working on the creek the following days in 2019:
- Feb 5th and 7th
- Feb 11th and 13th
- Feb 26th and 27th
- March 4 and 5
- March 11 and 12
- March 18 and 19
- March 25 and 26
- April 1 and 2
- April 23 and 24