Estuary-Lake Merritt Channel Moves Forward

On Friday, Feb. 22, City of Oakland officials opened a channel that should eventually connect the Alameda-Oakland Estuary with Lake Merritt via the Bay Trail.

The 750-foot-long channel that was opened had been dammed for more than 100 years. Other obstacles remain, according to a report in the San Francisco Chronicle: a culvert, a pumping station and a low bridge.

The opening of the channel and other improvements in the area are being paid, in part, by Measure DD, a $198 million bond measure passed by Oakland residents in 2002.

“This is the first time anyone has sailed down this channel in 140 years,” said Mayor Jean Quan, according to the Chronicle.

Kayakers and other water enthusiasts should be able to enjoy more water experiences once the Lake Merritt channel is connecting with the Estuary and Bay Trail, officials say.

The recent project cost $47 million, with further extensions to the channel expected by this summer.

Janet Levaux