Cultural Resource Study of the 4S Ranch, San Diego County

Located west of Rancho Bernardo, the 4S Ranch Project is one of the largest land development ventures in San Diego County.

BFSA began work on the 4S Ranch in 1980, which included an intense archaeological survey of the 3,600-acre property resulting in the identification of 170 archaeological sites. Since 1980, eight additional studies have been conducted on the 4S Ranch, including a testing program to determine the significance of the 170 archaeological sites and assess the potential impacts of the proposed development of the property.


The final survey and testing report for the 4S Ranch encompassed a ten-volume, 5,000-page document that became a technical appendix for the 4S Ranch Environmental Impact Report (EIR), which was accepted by the County in 1998. As part of the 4S Ranch archaeological program, a master Cultural Resource Management Plan (CRMP) was developed in concert with the County and in compliance with CEQA. The CRMP was designed for the management of all of the cultural resources within the ranch property, and over 80 sites of various levels of importance were preserved in open space.

For the sites of significance within the development envelope, a master research design was prepared to outline the relevant research objectives of future excavations, the range of special studies needed to complete the research, and the size of excavations for data recovery programs to achieve the mitigation of impacts. The data recovery program completed in 2011 represents one of the largest such programs ever undertaken in San Diego County and has resulted in major advances in our understanding of prehistoric cultures in this area.

Padres Petco Park, City of San Diego

BFSA was retained by the San Diego Padres under the City of San Diego to implement the mitigation monitoring program for the downtown Ballpark. During this program, hundreds of historic features and deposits were discovered and studied. The analysis of artifacts from historic features identified several different periods of use and ethnicities between 1880 and 1940.

The historic artifact collection from the Petco Park represents one of the largest collections of historic artifacts from the City of San Diego.  Examples of these artifacts can be seen in an interpretive display assembled by BFSA in the Western Metal Supply Company building inside the park itself.

Archaeological Survey of the Verlago Project, City of Peoria, Arizona

BFSA has conducted a survey of the proposed 1,436-acre Verlago Project located in the area of Peoria Lakes, east of the Agua Fria River and west of the Lake Pleasant Parkway.  The project covers the mesas and terraces along the Agua Fria River where numerous prehistoric sites were recorded, including the Calderwood Ruins.  The archaeological study included records searches at the Arizona State Museum and a physical survey of the property.  Prehistoric sites included major prehistoric occupation sites with habitation structures, temporary camps, lithic scatters, rock walls, canal sections, and water collection channels.  The property is being considered for residential and resort development.  A total of 31 prehistoric sites were identified and subjected to an initial assessment of significance.

Interstate 15 Widening, Rainbow Valley to Riverside County

Archaeological Survey and Extended Initial Study for Cultural Resources at the Interstate 15 Widening Project in San Diego and Riverside Counties.

This project was completed for the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), and involved the survey of right-of-way alignments for Interstate 15 in northern San Diego County and a portion in Riverside County. Following the survey, the identified resources were subjected to testing for significance evaluations.

The cultural resource study was conducted in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA).

Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) Bus Maintenance and CNG Fueling Facility Project (2017), County of Los Angeles

BFSA provided mitigation monitoring expertise to the LADOT during the grading and construction of the new downtown bus maintenance yard.  Covering three city blocks, BFSA monitored the excavations which encountered multiple historic features and artifact deposits.  Off-site construction utility trenches also encountered human remains representing the prehistoric Gabrieleño occupation of the area. 


The archaeological study focused, in part, on the relocation and assessment of the historic waterway, The Zanja Channel, which had been mapped crossing the property.  Significant discoveries during the mitigation program added important information to the history and prehistory of the County of Los Angeles.

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