Repairing Public Infrastructure


Hundreds of trees in the public right-of-way (ROW) were burned in the fires. In early 2019, the City contracted a certified arborist to perform a field survey of all street trees (those in the public right-of-way) in the areas affected by the fires. The Arborist Report identified approximately 700 street trees as being a potential hazard and recommended for removal. Beginning late June through October 2019, a contractor will remove these hazardous fire-damaged street trees in the burn scar areas. Removal of trees on private property is the responsibility of the property owner. MORE

Street Lights

Over 500 city-owned street lights were damaged during the Tubbs Fire. Staff has been working closely with PG&E to re-energize both individual and groups of streetlights when requested by residents. Staff are able to accommodate these requests when the electrical infrastructure is intact. Where the infrastructure is not intact, the City has established a phased recovery prioritization process to rebuild, re-energize, and where necessary, to redesign the system. MORE


Per City Council policy 13-32.020, the maintenance of sidewalks immediately in front of a property is the responsibility of the property owner. Given the scale of damage to the sidewalks in the fire-impacted areas due to the extraordinary circumstances caused by the fires and debris removal mission that followed, and the potential resulting safety hazards in the public right-of-way, the City of Santa Rosa is attempting to work with FEMA to fund a comprehensive City-led sidewalk replacement program. However, it’s unclear at this time how much sidewalk replacement will be funded by FEMA and what the approved locations will be. In the meantime, property owners may elect to move forward with removing and replacing the sidewalk along their property frontage; however, those costs will not be reimbursed by the City or FEMA. Property owners may have individual options for using debris removal insurance proceeds for any private sidewalk repairs. MORE

Pedestrian Bridges

Rebuilding efforts for three pedestrian bridges damaged in the wildfires are complete and open to the public. Construction on Parker Hill Road involved installation of new wooden decks to the two steel pedestrian bridges. In Francis Nielsen Park the existing wood bridge was damaged beyond repairable condition and the replacement bridge has been built with a more fire retardant design.  MORE

Funding for Recovery of Public Infrastructure:  The FEMA Public Assistance Program 

The October 2017 wildfires caused extensive damage to Santa Rosa’s public infrastructure. Under the presidential disaster declaration approved for the October 2017 wildfires, Santa Rosa is seeking federal aid to help with the repair and rebuilding of infrastructure through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance Program. The Public Assistance Program provides supplemental federal disaster funding to state and local governments for debris removal, life-saving emergency protective measures, and the repair, replacement, or restoration of disaster-damaged publicly-owned facilities. MORE