Environmental consultant on board for the project

Water district board of directors on May 12 unanimously approved the hiring of Environmental Science Associates of San Francisco to prepare the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Almaden Lake Project.

The EIR will evaluate the environmental impacts of the proposed project. Currently, the timeline for ESA to complete a draft of the EIR is late 2015. A 45-day public review and comment period follows, which will include a public meeting where the public can comment on the document.

As the report progresses, the project team will keep the community informed.


The Water District offers some details from the last public  meeting on April 9th, and announces plans to start the environmental study which will be the guide in choosing which (between alternatives 6 & 7) alternative will be chosen for the Almaden Lake Redesign.

If you missed the April 9th meeting and want to see it, it’s available here on youtube:


SAVE ALMADENLAKE met with members of: The City of San Jose, local homeowners, The Santa Clara Valley Water District, The Sierra Club and the Audubon Society. Everyone in attendance seemed to favor the Water District’s new feasible alternative number 7. It retains more water than option number one and offers a large body of water. Homeowners have asked that the new island be smaller than the fortified island. The islands are an effort to keep the gulls from gravitating to the lake and causing additional contamination. We are all very optimistic about feasible option #7 and how it preserves the largest body of water possible while resolving the problems at hand.


Please sign our petition at and take the survey put out by Johnny Khamis. We were told that eliminating the lake has more support than keeping the most water on Johnny Khamis survey, it only takes a minute or two!

Here is the write up from the SCVWD on the September 5th meeting:

September 5th Meeting Recap:

Meeting was attended by several people in the SCV Water District, Parks and Recreation, and 2 City Council offices.

Linda LeZotte (Director) said our feedback is written down and used to move forward. This is why it’s important for as many as possible to communicate with the Water District. Ms LeZotte also said she is aware of the survey put out by Johnny Khamis and a petition circulating from the SAVEALMADENLAKE group. She said they are happy and thrilled SAVEALMADENLAKE is helping to spread the word about the project.

Multiple people including Brian Schmidt states we are still early in this project. Brian Schmidt (Director) said that ALL IDEAS ARE WELCOME. Brian said both large and small changes are welcome to be submitted.

Rechelle Blank stated that AlmadenLake is considered an impaired water body. She said “We have not made any decisions”. Currently the mercury levels in the water are 10x greater, and that the levels in fish are 7x greater than the objectives set by the 2008 Basin Plan Amendment.

Since the previous meeting, the Water District reviewed a couple of plans submitted by members of the community. Neither of these plans can be feasible options.

Rechelle says, to meet the issues with the migratory fish, AlmadenLake cannot continue to exist as one single body of water. Since the last meeting, the Water District has determined that 10 feet is not a good depth for the lake. She said the lakes on either side (should option #1 be chosen)  will be reformed into a bowl shape and capped with 5 feet of clean fill. The East lake would ultimately have a depth of 30’ and the West lake would have a depth of 20’.

Rechelle also said they are working with the Parks Department to see if creating the West Coleman Trail Extension while doing this clean up project will provide cost savings or other benefits.

An environmental consultant will be hired in February or March to create the environmental impact study. The recommendation for what feasible option is chosen is scheduled to occur in February.  The environmental document for public review on the recommended project is expected to be available in July/ Aug 2014 and finally the board will certify and approve the project in Oct/ Nov of 2014.  During 2014-2016 is the expected design and permitting stage with construction starting in Feb 2016.

The oxygenation study is currently happening at 3 reservoirs using generator power. Currently the generators are running part time during weekdays. In December, the generators will be able to run continually. It will take 3 years to see changes in fish tissue although we should be able to see the changes in water quality much sooner.

During the open mic Q & A session, the engineers from SCVWD state that they must research and implement the solutions for the methylmercury and fish tissue targets by 2018 according to the 2008 Basin Plan Amendment. However upon closer inspection of the plan by multiple people affiliated with SAVEALMADENLAKE, it was decided that only the research studies must be complete by 2018 and SAVEALMADENLAKE believes that the Water District has more time to study and develop the best solutions possible. Please see specifically pages BPA-12 and BPA-17 in the 2008 Basin Plan Amendment and let us know if you read it differently than we did!

SAVE ALMADENLAKE was present at this meeting and handed out blue ribbons with our card for everyone who wanted to wear one. Many people missed our call to wear blue, but it was not wasted as many people at the meeting were wearing blue. This included both Rechelle Blank and Ngoc Nguyen.

We encourage as many people as possible to communicate with the Water District and attend the October 3rd meeting. The October 3rd meeting is slated to contain the same information as this meeting.

Please remember to wear blue to the October meeting. SAVE ALMADEN LAKE T-SHIRTS are available at

8/22/13  After 5 days and multiple messages to the Water District, they decided to allow our call to wear blue in the comments section in their blog. When we asked why our comment was being not being allowed, we were told that if they allowed the comment, it would be like they were advocating for some alternative. We had to point out that they allowed a comment that said “option #5 is best for everyone”. So when we suggested by the correspondence they were advocating option #5, they allowed our comment. We don’t expect a lot of people will see it now that its been nearly a week, but at least they are realizing they need to treat us fairly.

8/21/ 13 We were told today there is a rumor that WE (SAVE ALMADEN LAKE) are against the Water District doing any project at Almaden Lake. That is absolutely untrue. We at SAVE ALMADEN LAKE want to work with the Water District in choosing a clean-up plan that will preserve the most water and leave us with a LAKE.

If you encounter someone that is going against the Water District, that not us. Our OFFICIAL pages are 


At this point any other page is NOT one of our official pages.


We are planning to wear BLUE to the public meeting on September 5th to support keeping as much WATER in Almaden Lake as possible.

We have designed T shirts that will be available on Zazzle or you can have letters applied that Say SAVE ALMADEN LAKE at the T-shirt shop in the mall.

Here is the link to the T-Shirts we created. There is no need to purchase a special shirt unless you would like to, just wear any blue shirt you have if you don’t wish to order/ make one.

8/14/13  Here is the latest “Neighborhood Update” from the Water District: CLICK

8/8/13  Rechelle Blank from SCCWD wants to make sure that the graphic on our page depicting sports fields mapped out on top of their feasible option #5 is not misconstrued as being a Water District option. The option depicting sports fields was submitted to the Water District by Almaden Valley Youth Soccer and Little League.  We (Save Almaden Lake) oppose both the feasible option #5, As well as the proposal from the Almaden Valley Sports Leagues. We have changed our website to give clarity and more details:


Don't let our lake become artificial turf! This proposal is identical to the Water District ‘s feasible option #5, but with sports fields mapped out on top. We also oppose the Water District’s feasible option #5 which basically fills the lake and leaves just a creek. Could this sports proposal be what Ngoc Nguyen was referring to at the end of the CreaTV interview where he said, “The initial thought is if that alternative (feasible option #5) is selected, that we only have Alamitos creek going through the area and we would fill up the rest of the lake and make it open space. There will be opportunity there maybe to create new park new picnic area or The City of San Jose or other interest group can come in and develop other recreational use.” You can view the Ngoc Nguyen Interview for a limited time at this URL: How long has the idea of a sports complex been considered? We believe at least since 2010. This broadcast from Student Stephanie Nguyen cites her sources as saying the construction on the project of turning the lake area into a swimming pool, baseball diamonds, and basketball courts could start as early as 2013. You can see the Stephanie Nguyen Broadcast at this url:

8/7/13  This just in from Tony Mercado SCVWD

The water district will update the community on the progress of its work on Almaden Lake Thursday, Sept. 5 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Almaden Community Center, 6445 Camden Ave in San José. The project team will review the hydraulic analysis for the restored creek connection and address the ongoing oxygenation pilot project at the Calero and Stevens Creek reservoirs that could determine new alternatives for addressing mercury and methylation at the lake. Given the room can accommodate only 200 people, please make sure to RSVP by email to or by phone at 408-630-2342. The water district will schedule another meeting if necessary to accommodate high levels of interest.

8/1/ 13 Almaden Lake discussed on KLIV Radio! you can hear the podcast here:

7/31/ 13  We got a response to our petition from Shane Connolly Chief of Staff for Johnny Khamis. He wrote: “Councilmember Khamis asked me to let all of you know that he does NOT support filling in the lake. He appreciates your opposition to the proposals that would eliminate Almaden Lake .”

Shane Patrick Connolly  * City of San Jose District 10

7/29/13  We are mentioned in ABV News today!

7/29/13  Homeowners install their own signs after being denied permission to post a sign on the fence at Almaden Lake Park.

7/26/13  San Jose Inside’s Jennifer Wadsworth writes about Almaden Lake and references our website, facebook page and photos.  There are already pro-lake comments.

7/19/ 13 NBC’s Damian Trujillo was reporting from Almaden Lake  today. We really appreciate them coming out. Tune in tonight at 5 and 6 on channel 3 (comcast) or 11 for (antenna/ Direct TV)

here is the write up on NBC website:

and here is the 6:00 newscast

7/16/13 We have been informed the public meeting which was to be held in August will now be held sometime in September. We will post the date as soon as we have been informed.

7/14/13 Fire in the Santa Teresa Foothills today. There were 2 acres burned. New photos and links to video have been posted. Photos and video are available on our facebook page.

The SCV Water District has informed us that they are still confirming dates for the next public meeting which they announced months ago will be in August. This meeting will be held at the community center and we will post the information we have just as soon as we have it!

Please sign the petition!


Don’t forget to sign the petition at!