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Fullerton Creek Channel (A03)

Western Ave. to Beach Blvd.

Location: Buena Park
District: Supervisorial District 4

Channel History / Background

Fullerton Creek Channel from Coyote Creek Channel to its upstream terminus at Fullerton Dam is approximately 10.5 miles long.  Within these limits, the channel passes through portions of the cities of Fullerton, Anaheim, Buena Park, and La Palma. 

Prior to 1900, Fullerton Creek was a natural stream that originated in the Puente Hills.  The creek generally flowed southwesterly toward the southeastern limits of the City of Fullerton.  The creek then turned and flowed westerly toward Coyote Creek.  As agricultural uses were developed in the surrounding areas, the creek was channelized along an alignment that closely resembles its present alignment.

In 1940 and 1941, Fullerton Dam was constructed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers under authorization of the Flood Control Act of 1936.  Channel Improvements were constructed concurrently by the Orange County Flood Control District between the present location of State College Boulevard and Highland Avenue.

The flood control improvements constructed in the 1940’s were designed to accommodate scheduled controlled releases from Fullerton Dam with incremental increases from downstream tributary areas.  Due to the subsequent rapid development of the watershed and conversion from agricultural uses to commercial and residential uses, the channel improvements constructed in the 1940’s proved to be inadequate to provide protection to urbanized areas.

Project Information

Fullerton Creek Channel from 350 feet downstream of Western Avenue to approximately 130 feet upstream of Dale Street will undergo major improvements to convey the ultimate 100-year storm design discharge.  The project length is approximately 1.16 miles long.  The project reach was originally constructed in the late 1950’s as a trapezoidal channel with concrete lining.  In 1995, the north side’s concrete trapezoidal section sustained massive damage that lifted the concrete walls between Western Avenue and Beach Boulevard.  Extensive damages were noticeable between Stanton Avenue and the South Pacific Railroads and from Auto Center Drive to Dale Street. 

In 1995, the north wall from Western Avenue to Beach Boulevard underwent major emergency work to convert the north side trapezoidal section to a reinforced vertical concrete wall.  In 2000, the south side trapezoidal section was converted to a vertical wall with a false invert that aligns itself to the north side.  Presently, the project reach from Western Avenue to Beach Boulevard has two vertical walls with the south side having a lowered invert elevation and both walls connected with a false invert.  The project reach between Beach Boulevard and Dale Street remains an unimproved trapezoidal concrete lining since its original construction in the late 1950’s.

The improvement project from Western Avenue to Beach Boulevard entails removal of the existing north side wall and false invert and reconstruction of the north side wall to the same grade elevation of the existing south side wall.  Improvements from Beach Boulevard to Dale Street consist of removing the existing trapezoidal section and constructing a U-Channel with a lowered invert elevation.  The project will also involve relocation or realignment of existing subterranean utility lines impacting the proposed channel invert elevation.  Contractor’s construction means and methods will determine the type of shoring to implement to protect adjoining residential and commercial properties within the project’s vicinity. 

Location Map:

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