Burlingame Creeks

The City of Burlingame (City) has seven major creeks (El Portal/Trousdale, Mills, Easton, Sanchez, Terrace, Burlingame, and Ralston) that convey stormwater from the hills to the Bay. These creeks have existed long before Burlingame’s incorporation in 1908, and are a critical natural stormwater conveyance system that protects homes, businesses, and transportation networks from flooding during storm events. It is important to point out that, the creeks west of El Camino Real that run through the side or rear of private properties are owned and maintained by the private properties. The majority of the creeks east of El Camino Real have been constructed to run underground in man made storm drain pipes and box culvert structures.

The seven creeks provide over 11 miles of natural storm drains to our City. In addition, our man made storm drainage lines that flow underground in pipes or concrete lined open channels add an additional of approximately 45 miles to the City’s storm drain system. The City of Burlingame is fortunate to have these natural storm drains as they provide a habitat for wildlife, improves water quality to the bay, and a host of aesthetic benefits.

Our creeks are an irreplaceable natural resource that should be preserved as they are especially valuable to a Creekside property owner since a healthy creek traditionally increases the value of a Creekside property. A degraded creek, on the other hand, can cause serious property damage and can decrease its value. 

If you are a Creekside homeowner, we encourage you to protect, maintain, and care for your creek as it takes care of your property and the City in general during rain storms. The following information is provided to assist you to be good stewards as a Creekside homeowner.


If you are a Creekside homeowner and would like to know more about your creeks in Burlingame, and what you can do to properly maintain them and protect your property, we encourage you to attend our “Living with your Creek” open house Community Workshop on Thursday, September 12, 2019 at 5:30pm in the Lane Room at Burlingame’s Main Library (480 Primrose Road, Burlingame). If you have any further questions, please contact Martin Quan at mquan@burlingame.org.