Sam McWilliams to Present on Modeling Approach for Matilija Dam Ecosystem Restoration
April 25, 2019
Ventura River Lagoon model showing predicted water levels

Integral Scientist Sam McWilliams, E.I.T., will present a poster on the comprehensive modeling approach developed for the Matilija Dam at the inaugural Tri County Regional Water Summit on April 29–30, in Ojai, California.

Originally built in 1947 to store water for agriculture, the Matilija Dam has been obsolete for more than 20 years—trapping more than 6 million cubic yards of sediment and blocking access to endangered fish spawning habitat. The planned removal of the Matilija Dam requires an understanding of how the impounded sediment will redistribute within the Ventura River Lagoon and out along the coast. To evaluate the impact of sediment release, the Integral team developed a hydrodynamic model using the Delft3D suite. This model provides spatially and temporally varying results for inundation patterns, sediment deposition, and sediment discharged to coast.

The lagoon model is the first piece to a larger suite of models that investigates sediment fate and transport through the lagoon and along the coast. Results from the lagoon model will inform sediment loads to the coastal system after dam breach, response of the lagoon and coastal habitats to increased sediment loadings, and long-term trends in sediment transport patterns and coastline change. These results will support planning efforts and local responses to climate change effects.

Learn more about the summit.

For more information, contact Mr. McWilliams at