The Foster City Levee Project


Nia Goulishev, Journalist

“We are so proud and happy to see this project get underway, and extremely grateful to the people of Foster City for funding this work, through 2018’s Measure P,” stated Catherine Mahanpour, the mayor of Foster City. “This is an investment that is really going to pay immeasurable dividends – assuring the well-being and safety of our community in the near-term, and for generations to come.”

We all know the gorgeous levee by the bay with a scenic trail to the San Mateo Hayward Bridge. The Foster City Levee was built to prevent flooding. As sea levels continue to increase due to climate change, this may result in a big issue. With the current levee slowly wearing down and the water rising, that puts Foster City in great danger of being flooded. Eventually, it could even flood most of the city. If we were to have a flood, the citizens of Foster City would have to find the money for expensive flood insurance, which costs $779 per household each year.

On March 15, 2018, the city council made a 90 million dollar security measure to support improvements for the levee called Measure P. It passed, and here we are in late October of 2020. The construction for this project began on October 28, 2020. The project will take place from Port Royal Avenue to Shorebird Park, with a total of 2.5 miles of the levee being closed. The City plans on having this part of the levee take at least 10-12 months.

Since there is construction, there will be things to expect, such as noise, dust, and traffic delays. The construction work will take place from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 5 pm and on Saturdays from 9 am to 5 pm. There will be an estimate of 40-60 trucks per day! 

You may find yourself wondering, well, what parts of Foster City will be closed, other than the levee? Or are they just simply closing the levee? The answer is, for now, they have closed off parts of Sea Cloud Park for the trucks to move and have room. As of right now, the street of Sea Cloud Dr. has been lined with a bright orange plastic fence. That entire street has been closed off except for the left side open for street parking. There is also a pedestrian and vehicle area to cross the street, as shown in the photo to the right.

What exactly are they doing to the levee, though? The construction workers will increase the height and width of the levee to protect Foster City from sudden storms, tides, and make the levee more resistant to earthquakes. How will these improvements for the levee be done, and with what materials? The answer is it really depends on what part of the levee. The levee will be improved with materials such as sea wall, earthen levee, or a hybrid sheet pile wood.

“This project is really all about the people of Foster City, the families, and our businesses. We know this construction is going to be disruptive, but City staff and the contractor are dedicated to minimizing the inconveniences. The end result will be worth it, and I have confidence that our community understands that. I want to thank everyone, in advance, for their patience and understanding as we embark on this truly important project which is focused on making Foster City a better, safer place for everyone.” stated Dante Hall the Interim City Manager. 


The citizens of Foster City love and enjoy the levee daily, which is why it is so important they fix the levee. Although we would have to deal with not being able to use the trail, it will be for the better and the safety of the residents of Foster City, California.