Sloat Restoration through Managed Retreat

Sloat Restoration through Managed Retreat
This is our original vision for Sloat Restoration - graphic courtesy of PSA and Associates and the Ocean Beach Task Force

Our Vision of Beach Restoration and Preservation

We advocate a managed retreat strategy to restore both Ocean Beach south of Sloat and Sharp Park. At Sloat, our vision involves:

A long-term plan to relocate threatened infrastructure
(including the south of Sloat Great Highway, the two oceanside parking lots and the sewer lines underneath them).

The cleanup of all the rock and rubble littering the beach.

The use of sand dunes as the primary tool to slow erosion.

For Sharp Park, we advocate the decommissioning of the golf course, the removal of the rip-rap berm, and a full restoration of the wetland.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Southbound Lane Open

Also, Now Open: 2nd Parking Lot


For Immediate Release Contact: (415) 554-6931
October 15, 2010

Department completes Phase II of Emergency Repairs

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – The Department of Public Works (DPW) announced today the completion of Phase II of its emergency repair work along the Great Highway and the reopening of the roadway to southbound traffic south of Sloat in time for this evening’s commute. This stretch of the Great Highway was closed in December 2009 due to severe erosion.
DPW completed Phase I of the Great Highway Stabilization Project in April 2010, which included the construction of a 425-foot rock revetment on the beach to prevent further erosion of the bluffs. The department also removed 1,000 tons of debris from the beach during Phase I.
DPW has now realigned the roadway south of Sloat Boulevard and reduced it from two southbound lanes to one. The department also worked with the National Park Service (NPS) to reopen two parking lots at Sloat Boulevard.
Phase III of the emergency work includes addressing additional storm damage that threatens the public infrastructure along the entire 3,500-foot stretch of coastal bluff between the north parking lot and Fort Funston. Repair options are currently being reviewed by the National Park Service and the California Coastal Commission. .
In a separate process, the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR) is convening a multi-agency process to develop an Ocean Beach Master Plan. SPUR will work with community and agency stakeholders to create a vision of Ocean Beach as San Francisco’s next great public landscape, while recommending sustainable approaches to erosion and infrastructure in the context of sea-level rise and climate change. This 16-month effort is funded by grants from the California State Coastal Conservancy, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, and the National Parks Service.

For more information about the Great Highway Stabilization Project , visit
DPW is responsible for the care and maintenance of San Francisco’s streets and much of its infrastructure. The department cleans and resurfaces streets; plants and maintains City street trees; designs, constructs and maintains city-owned facilities; inspects streets and sidewalks; constructs curb ramps; removes graffiti from public property; and partners with the diverse neighborhoods in San Francisco to provide stellar cleaning and greening services.



  1. Hi, my name is Emma and I am a student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. I just recently completed a research paper about beach erosion and I am very interested in the topic. My home town is Newbury, MA which lies right on the beach. We have been experiencing a lot of erosion problems too, along our beaches and it has come to a point where the government keeps spending endless dollars and it keeps getting washed away with the beaches. My paper was mostly about fighting against the governments decisions and also of how to inform people that our tax dollars are going to this cause but mother natures going to eventually win so really it is just a waste of our time. Just recently sand was replenished on a beach in my hometown, Plum Island Beach, on November 2nd and on November 5th a storm came and washed away all the new sand and money that was just put into the beach. I just don’t understand why the government keeps putting money towards replenishing the beaches when they just keep getting washed away?

  2. Emma,
    As much as I agree with the statement that ultimately Mother Nature will always be able to overpower the efforts of our Tax dollars, where would we be without these renovations? This Plum Island beach that I'm sure you enjoy in the summers would most likely be non-existant without these repairs. The government is aware of the fact that they will have to replenish the beaches every so often, and that is how they chose to spend their money. Although I'm sure you are right in the sense that there are many other needs for this government funding, Did you ever consider the fact that the money your town gains through tourist spending because of these beaches makes up for the money spent maintaing them?

    Sandy in Seattle.

  3. Dear Sandy,
    I never actually thought of the fact that the government got their money from tourists who use our beaches. But could they really make that much income off tourists? There are only a couple beaches around here that make you pay to park at the beach. Besides that, what other fee does the beach cost? Besides government spending money on beaches, people who own property on beachfront spend a lot of money repairing their houses after they get damaged from erosion. A couple years ago, there was a house in my town that completely fell into the water because of beach erosion! Is it worth people rebuilding their houses on the same location if it's just going to happen again?
    The impact global warming has on America’s coastlines is huge too, and is a main cause of beach erosion and since global warming is inevitable, the coastlines will continue to be destroyed no matter how much effort is put into restoration projects. I know I would be devastated if Plum Island beach was no longer there, but to keep spending money to fix houses right on the beach, I think is a waste of time, money, and is affecting not only us but sea life as well.


  4. Like I said earlier, the impact on marine life is greatly affected from nourishment projects. Species and habitats are destroyed from the heavy machinery and the constant addition of sand. So although debris is not floating around or washing up onto shore, beach nourishment projects are still impacting the beaches.
    It costs one million dollars to repair one mile of beach. The United States spends over one hundred and fifty million dollars a year repairing beaches. This money comes directly from tax payers dollars, and over 50% of beaches that are repaired will be destroyed again. Do you think it’s worth spending this amount of money on something that could inevitably be a waste? For those who live on a beach, is this affecting your homes in any way? Are your families concerned about their homes/properties? It is true that some Americans favor the restoration and nourishment of beaches, perhaps including those who live and reside on beachfront property. However, many people have been blindsided and are oblivious to the consequences of marine life. They also do not understand that our tax dollars are being spent on a short term solution to a much bigger problem. Despite the severe ocean storms that wash away shorelines, our government still sets aside a budget for restoration and nourishment projects.


  5. Granted, the beach is a beautiful place to live, but is it a sensible place? Knowing all the possible damages that could happen, is it really worth it? Millions of Americans make their money off of America’s beaches. They own and rent beach houses, hotels, vacation spots, and many other recreational activities. Millions of Americans also live on the beach. If we just let “mother nature” do her thing, and allow the erosion of the beaches, there will be millions of Americans without homes and jobs. America’s beaches will also be destroyed, therefore having no place to go during the hot summer days. Is that a cost we are willing to take? Plus, if you add sand, the beaches will be restored and widened, which creates more recreational room for residents and tourists. The beach is always going to be a place of beauty; a place of comfort and relaxation; and a place of wants and desires. You can never take that image and idea away from people. That being said, people are going to want to live on the beach. This will always be true. I think if you live on a beach, you are taking full responsibility for any damages that might occur.