Watershed Connect represents the coordinated planning, infrastructure construction, and resource management in the Upper Santa Ana Watershed. The Yucaipa Valley Water District is excited to begin the infrastructure implementation phase of the foundational regional planning and coordination over the past decade.
Watershed Connect is a regional infrastructure program, a network of forward-looking projects designed to achieve water supply reliability, climate resilience, and long-term ecological health of the Upper Santa Ana River (Upper SAR) Watershed. This multiphase program comprised of interconnected water capture, recharge, storage, treatment, and conveyance projects will collectively maximize the use and reuse of local water resources, while attaining a healthy, functional river ecosystem that supports 22 federally and state-protected species. The innovative approach maximizes program value and offers synergistic benefits to the watershed and its people.
On July 20, 2021, the Board of Directors of the Yucaipa Valley Water District approved an agreement to create the Upper Santa Ana River Watershed Infrastructure Financing Authority (USAR WIFA), a Joint Powers Authority comprised of water agencies, all of whom rely upon the highly connected tributaries, groundwater basins, and natural ecosystems of the Santa Ana River. The San Bernardino Valley Water Conservation District, San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District and Yucaipa Valley Water District.
As shown in the illustration below, the tributaries of the Santa Ana River are all interconnected. In a similar manner, water resource infrastructure projects built in the Upper Santa Ana Watershed provide interrelated regional benefits.
Additional links related to the Upper Santa Ana River Watershed Infrastructure Financing Authority: