1995 in Review (and oh, what a year this has been! Some select highlights:)
Under heavy winter rains, a 160-foot section of Highway 1 begins to
slide, eventually slumping five feet.
MidCoast residents rally at the Montara road barricade, holding Caltrans
responsible for the road failure and demanding an immediate repair.
The MidCoast Community Council and CPR1 sponsor a community forum moderated
by Supervisor Ted Lempert on the Devil's Slide alternatives, including the
current tunnel solution.
Caltrans states that the road will take three months to fix (temporarily)
and uses the situation to push their claim that the best permanent solution
is the bypass. They state the bypass would cost about $65 million or less
The Sierra Club, Committee for Green Foothills and CPR1 challenge Caltrans
to disclose all information regarding the bypass and its alternatives.
County Supervisors Ted Lempert and Ruben Barrales meet with an independent
panel of engineers and geologists. After studying the available information
and visiting the slide, the experts conclude that a tunnel would be the
cheapest, safest and most environmentally-sound permanent solution to the
Shank/Balfour Beatty, a tunnel-building company in San Francisco, submits
an unofficial bid of $60 million to build the tunnel.
Residents of the Mid-Coast form "Citizens for the Tunnel,"
a group to promote the tunnel.
Pacifica residents establish "PTA-1" (Pacifica's Tunnel Alternative
for Highway 1).
The MidCoast Community Council reiterates its opposition to the bypass
and asks Caltrans to fully study all the alternatives.
Supervisors Lempert and Barrales introduce a motion to request all existing
Caltrans information regarding the tunnel. Supervisors Mary Griffin, Tom
Huening and Mike Nevin vote against the request and defeat it.
The Pacifica City Council requests that Caltrans supply all tunnel-related
documents produced since 1974. Caltrans responds with 4 pages and a single
In response to a court ruling, Caltrans produces a Supplementary Environmental
Impact Statement (SEIS) to address the noise impacts of the bypass. In addressing
comments from the public, Caltrans inflates the cost of a tunnel to $126
million (while providing no detail or justification). Their new estimate
for the bypass exceeds $90 Million with more engineering costs to come (see
A forum hosted by the City of Pacifica reveals that the tunnel and the
bypass would take the same amount of time to be approved and built. Tunnel
experts agree that a tunnel would cost roughly $60 million.
After more than five months, Highway 1 is finally reopened: 160 days
to fix 160 feet of road.
800 people attend PTA-1's Shamrock Ranch Tunnel Festival to learn about
the Tunnel Solution and have a heck of a good time.
The City of Pacifica withdraws its support for the bypass and requests
a new study of the tunnel.
30 Bay Area environmental groups sign a letter to theBoard of Supervisors
encouraging a thorough and objective study of the tunnel
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) signs the Record of Decision,
approving the SEIS but requiring a re-evaluation of the EIS because it is
nine years old. It is to include a new study of the tunnel.
Caltrans spokesman Greg Bayol states, "We'll re-evaluate it and
say a tunnel is too expensive."
Citzens for the Tunnel raises over $7000 at their Wine, Art & Jazz
for the Tunnel Fndraiser & Garden Party.
Realizing that a Caltrans tunnel study would be biased, the Board of
Supervisors requests an independent study.
FHWA gives preliminary approval for a tunnel study, but scales back
requests for citizens input and allows Caltrans to do maintanence cost estimates.
Save Our Coast/Citizens' Alliance for the Tunnel Solution file to begin
the petition drive for the Tunnel Initiative for the Nov, 1996 ballot