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General Press Releases

Port of San Diego and Great Ecology Honored with Two Merit Awards from San Diego Association of Environmental Professionals

The Port of San Diego and its planning and design consultant, Great Ecology, were honored with two merit awards from the San Diego Association of Environmental Professionals. The awards were presented at the Association’s annual Awards and Scholarship event to recognize exceptional technical and environmental documents, held September 20, 2018 at Tom Ham’s Lighthouse Restaurant.

The first award was for the South San Diego Bay Wetland Mitigation Bank Prospectus, which was recognized for Meritorious Outstanding Innovation in Green Planning and Design. The second award was for the Pond 20 Wetland Delineation Report, which was recognized as a Meritorious Outstanding Technical Report.

The South San Diego Bay Wetland Mitigation Bank Prospectus is the culmination of almost a decade of innovative green planning by the Port of San Diego. The Port is developing an 83.5-acre former solar salt evaporator pond in South San Diego Bay, known as Pond 20, into a tidal wetland mitigation bank. The project will reconnect the site to the bay and restore an uplands area to tidal wetland habitat. It is designed as a self-sustaining tidal marsh habitat complex, requiring minimal maintenance and will be highly resilient to potential sea level rise. As an important visual gateway for Imperial Beach, Pond 20 will enhance the public view from the Bayshore Bikeway. The former salt pond will allow habitat expansion to support migratory bird populations, increase biodiversity and assist with flood risk management.

Elements of the Prospectus that qualified it for the merit award include creativity and innovation, clarity, implementation, integration, ease of use, and the Pond 20 project summary.

“We are honored to be recognized by the San Diego Association of Environmental Professionals for the Pond 20 project’s Prospectus and Delineation Report,” said Rafael Castellanos, Chairman of the Board of Port Commissioners. “The Port is at the forefront among public agencies nationwide to utilize mitigation banking as a funding mechanism to complete critical restoration projects and improve environmental quality.”

The Pond 20 Wetland Delineation Report was prepared to clearly and comprehensively present data on the current site conditions of Pond 20. It includes both scientific and regulatory justifications for the delineation findings for the current water features.

The Delineation Report was honored with a merit award because of its clarity of organization and writing, technical difficulty, ease of use, originality, regulatory adequacy and the project summary.



About THE Port of San Diego

The Port of San Diego serves the people of California as a specially created district, balancing multiple uses on 34 miles along San Diego Bay spanning five cities. Collecting no tax dollars, the Port manages a diverse portfolio to generate revenues that support vital public services and amenities.

The Port champions Maritime, Waterfront Development, Public Safety, Experiences and Environment, all focused on enriching the relationship people and businesses have with our dynamic waterfront. From cargo and cruise terminals to hotels and restaurants, from marinas to museums, from 22 public parks to countless events, the Port contributes to the region’s prosperity and remarkable way of life on a daily basis.


Port of San Diego Environment champions the safekeeping and environmental care of our diverse ecosystems. Year after year, environmental goals are set and measured to evolve environmental initiatives – ensuring San Diego Bay remains a vibrant resource and contributes to a remarkable way of life for visitors and residents for generations to come.