Beavers that have moved into and made a home of part of a creek in the Bay Area city of Martinez will be allowed to stay, despite the flood threat their dam poses to the city's downtown. Many are calling the beavers the city's new tourist attraction.
"The Martinez City Council decided late Wednesday to let a beaver family and its dam remain in place until a council subcommittee can look at options to manage flood risk."
"The decision followed a raucous 31/2-hour public meeting in which the majority of speakers urged the council to keep the beavers despite concerns from downtown property owners that their properties could be flooded."
"The city, however, reserved the option to quickly yank out the dam in the event that flooding becomes imminent on Alhambra Creek."
"'This (the beavers) is a fantastic tourist attraction,' said David Frey, a Pleasant Hill maritime consultant who said he thinks the city should keep the dam in place and build a bypass around it so the creek would not flood. 'The beavers will pay for themselves.'"
"He said the beavers will attract people to the downtown from other areas. 'Who else is going to come down here? What else have you got?'"