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Dedication of Amethyst Basin Flood Control & Water Project


Photo Caption: Supervisor Robert Lovingood, Mojave Water Agency Board President Carl Coleman, Victorville Mayor Gloria Garcia and representatives of the High Desert’s state and federal legislative delegation celebrate the completion of Amethyst Basin.

Victorville, CA – The High Desert today became safer and better-able to meet its future water needs with the dedication of the Amethyst Basin flood control and groundwater recharge facility.

The 27.4-acre project, 10 years in the making, has been a cooperative effort between the San Bernardino County Flood Control District, the Mojave Water Agency, the City of Victorville and California Department of Water Resources. Officials from each of these agencies participated in the dedication ceremony.

“This project is a great example of how collaboration between various agencies can address the community’s needs while achieving cost-saving efficiencies,” said San Bernardino County First District Supervisor Robert Lovingood, who also serves on the governing body of the County Flood Control District.

Designed to handle a 100-year storm, the basin will capture peak storm flows and release them at a manageable rate to protect property and road crossings downstream of the basin, including Interstate 15. The County Flood Control District partnered with the Mojave Water Agency to incorporate interior dikes to allow for the recharge of imported water into local groundwater basins. 

“The Amethyst Basin Project is an important flood control facility for this area, but it also serves as a groundwater recharge basin right here in Victorville adding to the region’s sustainability,” Mojave Water Agency Board President Carl Coleman said. “The execution of this effort was like a relay race with each entity handing off the baton. It’s this kind of collaboration that yields great results.”

Amethyst Basin will deliver State Water Project water to recharge basins in the Oro Grande Wash, located west of Interstate 15 and south of Bear Valley Road in Victorville. Water from the State Water Project will be delivered to the recharge ponds through a pipeline that connects to the California Aqueduct at the Highway 395 turnout.

The Mojave Water Agency also provided right of way for the project and helped the Flood Control District secure a $5.2 million grant from the state Department of Water Resources, which accounted for the bulk of funding for the $9-million project. 

“The project is an example of successful collaboration among agencies to work on multi-benefit projects to improve water supply reliability while reducing flood risks and protecting public safety,” said Vic Nguyen, Southern Region Office Chief for the California Department of Water Resources. 

Taxpayers saved $2 million when 200,000 cubic yards of dirt from the basin was used in the Ranchero Road interchange project. The City of Victorville assisted in utility relocation and with the planning of future road improvements. The basin is located just east of Sycamore Street and Amethyst Road in Victorville.

“The Amethyst Basin brings tremendous benefit to the community of Victorville through improved flood control, increased safety, and the recharging of our groundwater supply, which ultimately increases our potential for future development,” said Victorville Mayor, Gloria Garcia. “We are grateful for the interagency collaboration and investment of manpower and resources that made this capital improvement a reality.”

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