State Water Project contractors respond to zero allocation

Orange County’s largest recycled water reservoir nears capacity

Trampas Canyon Reservoir in Orange County reached an unprecedented 90% capacity recently, nearing full capacity for the first time since its construction was completed in the summer of 2020.

“Trampas Canyon Reservoir is operating just as we envisioned,” said President Saundra Jacobs, Santa Margarita Water District. “Think of it as a savings account—not for a rainy day, but for a sunny one. By storing this water now, we can utilize it for irrigation purposes instead of tapping into our drinking water reserves during the hot, dry summer months.”

The reservoir’s surface stands at 618.95 feet, a storage volume of 4,438 acre-feet or 1.45 billion gallons. With a capacity designed to hold 1.6 billion gallons, the reservoir reaches depths of up to 88 feet and could fill the Rose Bowl approximately 20 times over.

The district says the amount of water stored is due to the storms California has had this winter and spring. Many homeowners’ associations across the district’s service areas—including Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Coto de Caza, Las Flores, Ladera Ranch, and Talega—suspended the use of their sprinkler systems during the rains.

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