Tuesday, August 9, 2016

West Sharp Park neighborhood needs a new, well maintained seawall

... rather than NIMBY "managed" termination.

From the City of Pacifica/City Manager Lorie Tinfow, also submitted to the Pacifica Tribune for her monthly column, 8/3/16, section A2 print version, City of Pacifica to Chart Course Toward Sea Level Rise Policy, pdf pages 2.

Image result for Pacifica Beach Blvd pictures
And science indicates humans
are smart enough to fix this
storm damage flooding problem.
Image result for human smart -  pictures
Even a lab rat knows
in a populated neighborhood
"managed retreat" is a dead end.
.... "The recent winter storms have raised our awareness of the impacts of sea level rise and climate change. Powerful waves resulting from severe storm conditions and king tides created significant damage that threatens City infrastructure. Since the effects of sea level rise and climate change are projected to continue and worsen, now is the time to determine how the City will proceed in terms of not just repairing the immediate damage but looking ahead and creating a policy direction for the next 30, 50, 100 years.

.... Approximately 40% of Pacifica's coastline has development adjacent to it, mostly clustered in the Manor, West Sharp Park and Rockaway districts. The City infrastructure immediately at risk include the streets of Esplanade Avenue, Beach Boulevard, Rockaway Beach Avenue, and Palmetto Avenue, the utilities below them, and the pump station near the Pacifica Pier. Private property is also at risk including homes, apartments, and businesses especially our hotels.

To begin to understand the issues, the City commissioined a study by internationally respected engineering firm Moffat & Nichol of the coastal hazard risks related to City property at 2212 Beach Boulevard where we have plans for a hotel, restaurant and new library. The study concluded that as long as the City maintains the sea wall along Beach Boulevard, the hazards through at least year 2100 are likely to minimal." ...  Read more from the pdf link above.

Reference, scientific studies. City of Pacifica, CA - Beach Boulevard Development Site, Coastal Hazards Study, Executive Summary/Moffatt & Nichol, 6/16, pdf pages 6.  And, Full Technical Report with Executive Summary/Moffatt & Nichol, 6/16, pdf pages 40.

Reference, definitions (from the article).  "In simple terms, there appears to be two policy options-- "managed retreat" (also referred to as strategic retreat or managed realignment) and something referred to as "asset protection". Managed Retreat involves breaching an existing coastal defense, such as a sea wall or an embankment, and allowing the land behind to be flooded by the incoming tide, thus setting back the line of actively maintained coastline.  Alternatively, Asset Protection means taking steps to protect infrastructure such as streets, trails, utility lines, and other facilities, against the wave action and rising sea level. The City and County of San Francisco have taken this approach related to the Oceanside Wastewater Treatment Plant.

Related, article. Pacifica Tribune, 7/15/16," ...  "In 2013, when City Council first moved forward on a plan to develop the city owned Beach Boulevard property where City Council meets and where the former wastewater treatment plant is, the environmental studies the city undertook showed no reason not to build there. An updated coastal hazards study conducted last month by Moffatt and Nichol, with an eye toward determining bluff erosion and sea level rise, tides, waves and risk from tsunamis, concluded the site is safe for development. Flooding caused by wave overtopping during high tides will be a rare occurrence, the study states. There is an annual .4 percent chance of a tsunami event occurring. The beach and the seawall protect the area near 2212 Beach Blvd. from bluff erosion. The building design should take those risks into account, the study states."

Note Beach Blvd  photographs. flooding from Pacifica Riptide,"Coastal Commission: Pacifica's Beach Blvd., 12/24/14.  Lab rat by Garry Gay/Getty Images from The Huffington Post/Science, 9/17/14,"Mice Given Gene From Human Brains Turn Out To Be Super-Smart." 

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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