South San Francisco Bay Shoreline

Stop Development on South San Francisco Bay Shoreline

One of the last unprotected open space areas along the south San Francisco Bay shoreline is at risk. 

Developers want to truck in 1.67 million cubic yards of fill (over 100,000 truckloads) to build nearly 500 houses on top of open space lands and wildlife habitat in what’s called “Area 4” by the City of Newark. We must fight this proposal to restore the San Francisco Bay shoreline!

Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse
Photo: U.S. Geological Survey

A mosaic of wetlands and uplands, the 559-acre Area 4 is home to over a dozen special-status species, including the endangered Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse (a unique marsh species only found in San Francisco Bay). This area is also directly adjacent to Mowry Slough, one of the Bay’s most critical pupping sites for Pacific harbor seals. Almost entirely within a 100-year flood plain, development of Area 4 would destroy wildlife habitat and expose thousands of new residents to flooding from sea level rise.

Scientists and resource agencies have been unequivocal in their desire to see Area 4 protected and restored. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has said “the proposed development of Area 4 will only add to the cumulative loss of tidal wetlands in San Francisco Bay and endangered species that are dependent on that habitat.” The SF Bay Regional Water Board has similarly urged its protection, saying Area 4 presents “a rare opportunity… to provide an area for tidal marsh species to move up slope in response to sea level rise.”

This issue is urgent! Email the Newark City Council now, asking them to stop this development before it’s too late, and instead, advocate for the long-term protection and restoration of the area that provides wildlife habitat and flood protection in the face of climate change and sea level rise. 

Over a dozen environmental organizations have called on the City of Newark to stop this development, and instead, promote the inclusion of Area 4 in the Don Edwards SF Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Organizations include Alameda Creek Alliance, California Native Plant Society – East Bay Chapter, Center for Biological Diversity, Citizens Committee to Complete the Refuge, Defenders of Wildlife, Greenbelt Alliance, Ohlone Audubon Society, San Francisco Baykeeper, Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society, Sierra Club SF Bay Chapter, Save The Bay, and the Tri-City Ecology Center. Join us in asking the City of Newark to halt development plans, before it’s too late.

Questions about this issue? We’re here to help! Contact us today.

Photo: Aric Crabb

4 Comments on “Stop Development on South San Francisco Bay Shoreline

  1. I oppose landfill of the San Francisco Bay, and the development of Area 4.

  2. Filling in the Bay’s marshland to build is a terrible idea – and doing it to build single family homes couldn’t be a worse idea. First, the wetlands are really needed as our climate changes. And approving a single family homeownership project there means that every individual homeowner will be on their own in future years, trying to cope with rising tides and the costs they will have to incur over time. Why would you jeopardize all of these people as well as the wetlands by approving this project where it should not go? The removal of marshland to help with rising tides will also further jeopardize other cities’ shorelines around the Bay – so this development is everybody’s business in the region. Finally, nobody should be building sprawl development in the Bay Area at all. We have too much housing to build and not enough space. The City Council should absolutely not approve this project. And it needs to change its General Plan that encouraged this low-density proposal in a fragile area to move forward. Thank you.

  3. Stop development on South San Francisco Bay and provide long term protection for wild life and flood protection.

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