Expansive view looking south across Coyote Valley, with green fields, hillsides spotted with trees, mountains extending into the distance, and a sky filled with white fluffy clouds

About Coyote Valley

Nestled between the Santa Cruz Mountains and the Diablo Range at the southern edge of San Jose, lies the stunning Coyote Valley. As our top conservation priority, it encompasses a unique combination of nature’s benefits such as floodplains, local water supply, wildlife connectivity, agriculture, recreation, and more.

Coyote Valley offers a rare opportunity to connect over one million acres of core habitat in the surrounding mountains, creating a Landscape Linkage allowing species to disperse, migrate, and shift ranges in response to climate change. With California’s prolonged droughts and more frequent flooding and wildfires, protecting and restoring Coyote Valley's natural benefits is the smartest long-term investment we can make together for the health and sustainability of our region, especially in the face of a changing climate.



The Authority, through an innovative partnership with Peninsula Open Space Trust (POST) and the City of San Jose, has protected 1,000 acres of open space in North Coyote Valley, creating the North Coyote Valley Conservation Area. As identified in the Coyote Valley Landscape Linkage vision, protection of the North Coyote Valley is a key link in connecting wildlife habitats, providing opportunities to restore natural floodplains and improve water quality, and helping to build a climate resilient future for the residents of the 10th largest city in the nation.

Recognizing the importance of protecting nature for the benefits it provides our communities, this landmark transaction pulled together funding from the Authority’s Measure Q, San Jose’s Measure T, and POST, with support from multiple local and state agencies to take the first step towards a re-imagined and greener future for Coyote Valley and put an end to sprawl in the Santa Clara Valley.

Immediately to the south, the Authority and POST are also working together to conserve the landscape of the Mid-Coyote Valley, an area home to critical habitat and rich farmland. Over 400 acres of land have already been preserved in Mid-Coyote Valley, and the Authority continues to work with willing landowners to conserve their lands for future generations.  

Coyote Valley Map

A vital linkage

When the Authority released the Coyote Valley Landscape Linkage, it established a vision to protect and restore Coyote Valley as natural infrastructure, benefiting our human and natural communities. To implement this vision, the North Coyote Valley was deemed an essential element for its vital environmental, social, and economic benefits.

North Coyote Valley is where the two mountain ranges are closest and contains the largest remaining undeveloped floodplain, or low-lying land next to a creek, within San Jose, providing essential flood risk reduction, clean water supply, and water quality benefits.

Protection of these lands unlocks the potential to expand outdoor public recreation and create a world class nature preserve for Santa Clara Valley residents and visitors alike. This landscape also provides the potential to support local farmers and ranchers. Coyote Valley offers unparalleled opportunities to create a 21st century greenbelt near urban San Jose, and delivers a host of ecological, economic, and quality of life benefits - now and for future generations.


For thousands of years, Indigenous Peoples stewarded Coyote Valley’s rich tapestry of freshwater wetlands, grassland, oak savannahs, and riparian woodlands. These Indigenous Peoples still reside in the region, and their historic ethic of stewardship continues into the present day. 


Just as we invest in man-made infrastructure, like transportation and waste and water treatment, strategic investments in natural infrastructure, which recognizes and protects the valuable benefits or “services” that nature provides, can benefit our urban communities through:

Orange infographic with Coyote Valley's infrastructure benefits: flood protection, climate resilience, wildlife connectivity, clean water, public recreation, agriculture

Coyote Valley: A Case for Conservation
Laguna Seca wetland full of clear, still water under a cloudy sky with hills in distance
Bobcat walking across brown grass
Orchard of green trees casting long shadows in the golden light

Our Approach

The Authority's work in Coyote Valley serves as an exemplary model across the state and nation on how strategic investments in natural infrastructure, smart land use policies, and practical urban design can help us build resilience and adapt to climate change.

This work builds on our extensive research in Coyote Valley, identifying a Landscape Linkage vision through wildlife studies, the importance of our water resources, and the need to support our local agriculture. This research informs our work now and into the future.

The Authority is leading a public planning process to define the future of Coyote Valley and open it to the public. The Coyote Valley Conservation Areas Master Plan will inform how to restore these lands to enhance the natural benefits they provide.

As we plan the future of Coyote Valley through the Conservation Areas Master Plan, the Authority is already working to carefully steward this vital landscape. We invite the community to join us on this mission of stewardship. Opportunities to help heal and restore Coyote Valley’s conserved lands are on-going. 

How You Can Get Involved

As our work begins, we want you to help be a part of the vision process for Coyote Valley. This will be a multi-year journey and we ask for your patience and involvement along the way. To stay up to date on our progress, we encourage you to get involved:
  1. Visit the Coyote Valley Conservation Areas Master Plan website.
  2. Be one of the first to attend docent-led events on these properties by receiving our Event Calendar
  3. Get your hands dirty and Volunteer to help us manage, steward, and restore these open spaces
  4. Lend your voice to the visioning process by signing up for the Master Plan interest list
  5. Get the latest news on our work in Coyote Valley by signing up for the Open Space Outlook Newsletter
  6. Learn about the efforts to clean up Monterey Road, and get information on how you can help keep the area safe and clean through the San Jose District 2 Clean Streets Initiative.
Three people with yellow gloves and rakes working on a dusty trail on a golden hill
Small pond lined with gray rocks in a green meadow with hills in background
Group of 15 hikers in colorful clothing taking in the view of Coyote Valley and green hills