Air & Water


The Valley’s Edge area incorporates a variety of strategies to reduce impacts to air quality and long-term greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions:

  • Alternative forms of transportation: The open space trail system makes for easy and safe travel via walking and biking. 100% of the roads in the community can accommodate neighborhood electric vehicles.

  • Mix of land uses: Shops, homes, recreation, and dining options are placed near each other to reduce vehicle miles, traffic volume, and vehicle emissions.
  • Energy efficiency: All homes and buildings will meet or exceed CALGreen energy efficiency standards, with preference for carbon neutral (Net Zero) designs and all electric (low carbon fuel source) buildings.
  • Fuel-switching strategies: Valley’s Edge encourages use of alternative fuels wherever possible, such as increased solar beyond the minimum requirement, electric vehicle charging outlets and stations, and homes built to accommodate electric options.  
  • Enhancing the urban forest: Thousands of trees will be planted throughout the community along streets, in parks, parking lots, and other public or private areas of Valley’s Edge increasing Chico’s urban forest and carbon dioxide uptake.
  • Indoor environmental quality: Homes and apartments will be designed for healthy indoor environments through active fresh air exchange, effective ventilation, and non-toxic building materials.

Much like the land, the use and management of water has been thoughtfully planned throughout Valley’s Edge to best serve its residents and protect the environment in which it’s found. The community will be served by The California Water Service Company (Cal Water), which operates under the Urban Water Management Plan (UWMP) for the Chico-Hamilton City District, and is responsible for providing safe and reliable water for the Valley’s Edge community.


Water will be delivered to homes, buildings, and exteriors through conventional underground piping together with potential underground wells, booster pumps, and pressure reducers. An on-site permanent water storage tank may be required. Water infrastructure improvements will ultimately result in a fully looped/connected system, owned and operated by Cal Water.


Two agricultural wells exist on the property, a north well located near the community park, and a south well located near the Village Core. These wells may be utilized for irrigation and/or water-related amenities, including recreational pond features which would also provide a source of water for wildland fire suppression.


The recognition of water as a valuable natural resource is reflected in both the overall land use plan and the policies for the Valley’s Edge plan. Examples of these policies:


  • Low flow water-efficient toilets
  • Water-efficient shower heads
  • Water-efficient dishwashers
  • California Department of Water Resources-compliant landscaping
  • Drought tolerant plants suitable for Valley’s Edge soils type and micro-climate zone
  • Group plants with similar water requirements to allow for better irrigation precision.
  • Limited (less than 20%) turf areas
  • “Smart” programmable irrigation control system with rain sensors
  • Drip and overhead irrigation that attain minimum 70% effectiveness
  • Reduce residential water use by 20% or greater through waterwise fixtures and consumer education

Community and Common areas:

  • Turf limited to parks, dog parks, yoga lawns, event spaces, and other functional use areas where turf treatment is preferred
  • “Smart” programmable irrigation control system with rain sensors
  • Drip and overhead irrigation that attain minimum 70% effectiveness
  • Low-flow fixtures, drip irrigation and monitoring systems in predominantly drought-tolerant landscapes

The City of Chico will provide sanitary sewer service to Valley’s Edge from the City’s Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP) located about four miles southwest of the City on Chico River Road. The WPCP is a secondary treatment facility and has a capacity of 12 million gallons per day (MGD) with the ability to expand to 15 million gallons per day capacity in the future.


The drainage system at Valley’s Edge will use both above ground and subsurface systems, including underground pipe conveyances, drainage basins, bioswales (broad, shallow ditches intentionally planted with vegetation to collect and slow the flow of rainwater while also filtering out debris and pollution), outfalls (discharge points into larger bodies of water), existing natural swales, and seasonal creeks. All stormwater from developed areas will be treated for quality before being discharged into creeks, primarily the Butte Creek Diversion Channel.

Stormwater runoff from development areas will be collected, treated, and retained or detained as necessary to avoid impacting downstream properties and facilities, including environmental preserves.


To manage stormwater runoff for reuse and environmental planning, Valley’s Edge may use a variety of techniques:

  • Porous pavement and reduced hardscape aim to maximize infiltration and slow runoff
  • Amended soil, bioretention cells, and rain gardens also lessen and slow runoff, as well as reduce irrigation water use
  • Native vegetation to reduce summer irrigation demand
  • Enhanced natural drainage to slow and meter runoff to pre-development conditions, while enhancing retention in a visually pleasing setting

The above management and treatment of stormwater runoff also serves to increase rainwater retention, thereby restoring natural riparian areas (land alongside creeks, streams, and rivers) and seasonal streambeds, improving native biodiversity, and enhancing the potential for groundwater recharge.