Islais Creek / Bayview Resilience

The Islais Creek / Bayview neighborhood faces urgent seismic risks and increasing flood risks from sea level rise. The Port of San Francisco, along with City partners, are tackling both of these risks through the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers San Francisco Waterfront Coastal Study and the Southern Waterfront Seismic Vulnerability Assessment.

Flood and Earthquake Risks in Islais Creek / Bayview

Aerial of Heron's Head Park

Flooding from sea level rise has the potential to impact life in the Islais Creek / Bayveiw community. As sea levels continue to rise, there will be additional flood risks near Islais Creek and along the shoreline, including to Muni and key utility infrastructure. Flooding could disrupt local commercial corridors, commutes and transit options, parks and open spaces, and emergency services, posing serious challenges to the Islais Creek / Bayview community and the City as a whole.

Islais Creek was once a broad creek and marsh area that was filled for agricultural and industrial uses in the late 1800s. Filled areas, like Islais Creek, are subject to liquefaction in the event of an earthquake. You can learn more about flood and earthquake risks in Islais Creek / Bayview on the Waterfront Resilience Story Maps.

Impacts of Flood and Seismic Risks

  • Transportation and mobility
  • Emergency response and recovery
  • Disruption and damage to small businesses
  • Disruption and damage to Port operations and tenants
  • Disruption and damage to community assets and services including parks, roadways, schools, and homes

Given the complex nature of these issues and the scale of potential impacts, many interrelated efforts are being conducted in the City to understand the severity and progression of climate change impacts, involve the people and communities that could be potentially affected by flooding or earthquakes, and create ideas and actions to protect communities, the economy, and the environment. These efforts are described below.

Resilience Efforts Underway

San Francisco Waterfront Coastal Flood Study

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the Port have partnered to study flood risk along San Francisco's bayside shoreline. The San Francisco Waterfront Coastal Flood Study is an important opportunity to develop strategies and solutions to strengthen the waterfront's resilience in a way that protects life safety, as well as the assets, resources, and infrastructure that are most valued by those who live, work, and recreate in the neighborhood.

Learn more about the San Francisco Waterfront Coastal Flood Study

Islais Creek Adaptation Strategy

The Islais Creek Adaptation Strategy led by San Francisco Planning, in partnership with the Port and SFMTA, is two-year community planning process to address coastal flood risk by developing actionable strategies. This two-year community planning process in the Islais Creek area will develop actionable strategies that address coastal flood risk. Building on the Resilient by Design proposal, the Strategy will develop a long-range vision for the Islais Creek shoreline, solutions for public infrastructure, and a funding and implementation strategy that increases the resilience of the community and provides improved transportation networks and new open space. Funded by a Caltrans Transportation Planning grant, the study was completed in August 2021. 

Learn more about the Islais Creek Adaptation Strategy.

Southern Waterfront Seismic Vulnerability Assessment

Cargo ship at Pier 96

The Port is leading an effort in the southern part of the Port's jurisdiction to assess the vulnerabilities, identify the opportunities and develop near, mid-, and long-term adaptation strategies for the area. The purpose of the assessment is to fill any gaps in the Port, City, and community understanding of the risks and opportunities. The Assessment will draw from, and integrate with, a number of existing efforts, including Islais Creek Adaptation Strategy, the Seawall Program, the USACE San Francisco Waterfront Coastal Study, and the Citywide sea level rise work.

  • Focus: All hazards, broad resilience (Equity, Environment, Economy)
  • Implementation: Short, Medium, and Long-Term
  • Lead Agency: Port of San Francisco