The Infrastructure and Sustainability Department is responsible for the comprehensive oversight of major City infrastructure projects, sustainability initiatives, coastal zone management activities, implementation of the climate action plan, and environmental initiatives. The Department is comprised of two divisions: the Engineering Division and the Sustainability Division.
As with most cities, bridges, roadways and City owned utility infrastructure were constructed many years ago and are now coming to the age where rehabilitation efforts are required. In addition, roadways were once envisioned to be car-centric. As the City evolves, there is a new focus on mode shift and delivering safer means of travel on foot and on alternative vehicles, such as bikes, e-bikes and FUVs. The Infrastructure and Engineering functions of the Department are focused on significant capital improvement efforts to rebuild, rehabilitate and re-envision new and existing infrastructure for the benefit of this generation and the next.
Additionally, the City launched in July of 2021, a new Division under the Infrastructure and Sustainability Department to focus on “Sustainability.” Sustainability is the ability to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Sustainability recognizes that resources are limited, and should be used wisely with consideration for long-term priorities and consequences for humans and the environment. The Sustainability Division will focus on how the City can support practices that benefit environmental, human and economic well-being with the penultimate goal of encouraging equitable access to natural resources and increasing public health and well-being.
Capital Improvement Projects
The Capital Improvement Projects Section is responsible for the oversight of the City’s infrastructure projects from new projects to major rehabilitation projects to continuing efforts, such as pavement management. The Division works on the planning, budgeting and oversight of a portfolio of projects valued at up to $200 million. For detailed information regarding the CIP Team is available please visit the Capital Improvement page. For updates to ongoing projects visit the City Projects page
The Traffic Engineering is primarily responsible for the oversight and development of a safe and efficient transportation network for pedestrians, cyclists and other vehicle drivers in the City. To that end, this Team is responsible for the development, monitoring, and implementation of traffic improvements in the City. The Traffic and Public Safety Commission, Planning Commission and City Council also rely upon the expertise of the Traffic Engineering Team when developing policies, evaluating land development activities or assessing new programs or opportunities for the City. For detailed information regarding the Traffic Engineering Team please visit the Traffic Engineering pages.
Coastal Zone Management
The Coastal Zone Management function of the Department oversees beach nourishment projects that provide shoreline protection, erosion control, recreational benefits, and habitat enhancement as well as acting as the liaison for all coastal activities internally and externally. Wide, sandy beaches along the Pacific shoreline attract tourists, improve property values, protect public and private structures and minimize bluff failures. The California Coastal Sediment Management Workgroup categorizes Encinitas beaches to be, “erosional hot spots” due to the long shore dispersal rate. High energy waves and severe winter storms plus the threat of sea level rise contribute to a constant state of awareness regarding protections to the shoreline. This condition will continue to worsen if counter action in the form of artificial beach nourishment is not taken.
Through the management of the implementation of the City’s Climate Action Plan the Climate Action Team works collaboratively with all City Departments to innovate and develop opportunities to meet the City’s goals in terms of greenhouse gas reductions. The City’s updated Climate Action Pan provides a roadmap for reducing greenhouse gas emissions through the implementation of various strategies, goals, actions and supporting measures. The CAP sets ambitious targets to reduce emissions: 13% below 2012 levels by 2020 and 44% below 2012 levels by 2030. The Climate Action Team coordinates this effort to ensure CAP targets and goals will be met. Progress on meeting CAP goals and targets can be tracked on the City’s Climate Dashboard.