Thursday, October 10, 2013
Dear Surfriders and Friends,
As promised, Ben Grant of the SPUR Ocean Beach Master Plan presented at October’s chapter meeting. After providing a comprehensive overview of the OBMP, Mr. Grant filled us in on recent developments for Sloat. These included: efforts to stabilize the new sand bank in front of the north parking lot with a straw bale system; a proposal to relocate some of the rubble away from the Sloat shorebreak, the status of the Army Corps of Engineers’ quest to nourish Ocean Beach with dredged sand from the shipping channel; and a look at the studies being developed to test the Lake Merced Tunnel protection concept (as outlined in the Master Plan).
Perhaps the biggest news is that plans are moving forward to shrink the footprint of the Great Highway from Sloat to Skyline. An SFMTA traffic study is underway that may result in the consolidation of this portion of the Great Highway into two lanes: one northbound and one southbound lane. According to SPUR, the goal is to be able to relocate beach parking away from the water’s edge. New parking would be available in the portions of the old southbound lane. There will eventually be a public meeting on this and other projects, so stay tuned to provide input.
In general, we applaud the work of the SPUR team and our City agencies in trying to solve the Sloat challenge. Moving the road gradually away from the water is definitely a step in the right direction. It is part of the managed retreat solution to erosion that our chapter has been advocating for since the 1990s. For the very near term, we hope to see more sustained action with sand replenishment. Ideally, rubble clean-up and re-alignment would also be included as part of the same project. As we have posted before, the north pacific storm track keeps its own schedule. That means a major winter storm can strike right at our coast with little notice. It would be a shame to see another emergency quarry stone revetment on our beach before the Master Plan work is finished. Please keep up the pressure with us! It all helps - whether sending letters to officials, attending pubic meetings or just spreading the word throughout the community.
Thanks for staying engaged.