Levee Evaluation Program

DWR’s Levee Evaluation Program was initiated in 2006 and concluded in spring 2015. The Levee Evaluation Program was divided into two projects, the ULE Project and the NULE Project, which were further divided into multiple study areas. These two projects have completed an unprecedented geotechnical evaluation of over 1,900 miles of levees.

Urban Levee Evaluation Project (ULE)

ULE has evaluated approximately 330 miles of State Plan of Flood Control (SPFC) levees and approximately 90 miles of appurtenant (protecting the same basin) non-SPFC levees protecting areas with populations exceeding 10,000 people. ULE was divided into over 30 separate study areas that represented a specific urban area protected by a distinct levee system.

Non-Urban Levee Evaluation Project (NULE)

NULE has evaluated approximately 1,220 miles of SPFC levees and approximately 280 miles of appurtenant non-SPFC levees in the Central Valley in areas with populations of less than 10,000. NULE was performed in two phases. For all NULE levees, DWR has conducted extensive historic data collection and performed preliminary geotechnical evaluations using existing data. This phase was reported by major river basin with separate reports prepared for the Sacramento River Basin and for the San Joaquin River Basin. For NULE levees protecting populations greater than 1,000, DWR conducted a second phase of evaluations. These evaluations included physical explorations and geotechnical analyses and reporting for approximately 270 miles. Reporting for this second phase was divided into over 20 separate study areas.

San Joaquin Levee Evaluation Project (SJLE) / San Joaquin River Restoration Program (SJRRP)

SJLE assessed approximately 44 miles of SPFC levees in the Eastside Bypass and Gravelly Ford Study Areas. The Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), lead agency for SJRRP, has initiated restoration releases from Friant Dam and is evaluating alternatives for routing of long-term restoration flows. DWR is assisting Reclamation in assessing the impacts of restoration flows under the SJRRP on flood risk in the restoration area and developing strategies to manage those impacts.


Data and reports generated by the Program are available through an interactive website below

Contact Information: LEP@water.ca.gov

DWR makes no warranties, representations or guarantees, either expressed or implied, as to the completeness, accuracy or correctness of the data nor accepts or assumes any liability arising from its use.