Fauntleroy Creek Culverts Replacement

Fauntleroy Creek is located in southwest Seattle and drains a 149-acre area (.23 square mile) - called the Fauntleroy Watershed - into the Puget Sound.

There are three culverts along Fauntleroy Creek. The culverts located at 45th Ave SW (near SW Wildwood Pl) and California Ave SW (near SW Brace Point Dr) are approximately 100 years old and in extremely poor structural condition. These culverts also do not meet state laws as they act as barriers for fish to pass into the upper channel of Fauntleroy Creek, which is a viable fish habitat. To reduce the risk of culvert failure, mitigate storm-related flooding, and restore fish passage, the culverts need to be fully replaced.

The third culvert, which is located under Fauntleroy Way and includes a fish ladder, was replaced in the late 1990's and is not part of this project.

What’s Happening Now?

The project is advancing through the Options Analysis Phase, and SPU has identified a recommended option for replacing the 45th Ave SW culvert. Options analysis will continue as the California Ave SW culvert design is evaluated further.

  • Options analysis kicked off in 2018 and will continue through early 2020
  • SPU is assessing the feasibility of design for recommended options and further refining cost estimates
  • SPU is working in close partnership with Fauntleroy Church to discuss options for the California Ave SW culvert (joint public/private ownership)
  • SPU is actively exploring grant opportunities to supplement project funding

SPU continues to investigate creek, drainage, sediment, utility, or other infrastructure issues within the Fauntleroy Creek drainage basin that may be addressed through this or other projects.

Community Feedback

Over the past few months, we have met with many community members to introduce the project and gather feedback. We are continuing to seek community input to inform the early design phase of the project and have been collaborating with Fauntleroy Church leadership to address design options, preferences, and potential partnership opportunities for the California Ave SW culvert.

This fall, SPU is hosting briefings in the neighborhood to update the community on the project progress. Sign up for the project listserv and stay tuned for more information about a briefing near you.

SPU will continue to provide updates to the community via project emails. To receive updates about the project, please sign up for the listserv under "Connect" on the right-hand side of this page.

Project Goals and Benefits

The primary intent of the project is to prevent the risk of catastrophic failure of the roadway culverts and the associated potential impacts to health, public safety, and the environment. The project's goals and opportunities also include:

  • Reducing the risk of culvert failure
  • Improve creek resiliency to higher flows from anticipated climate change Restoring fish passage, which supports tribal treaty rights and SPU's commitment to racial and social justice
  • Considering community safety in culvert design
  • Enhancing the community's connection to the Fauntleroy watershed
  • Providing safer working conditions for maintenance crews

Project Documents