Posted by: Stan Russell | October 23, 2017

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Monday, Oct. 23

Photos of Mud Creek (PM 8.9), Cow Cliffs (PM 28.35) and Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52)

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Monday, Oct. 23

REMINDER: The State Route 1 closure, due to Mud Creek slide, has moved from its current location north of Salmon Creek, just south of the Ranger Station (Mon. Co. PM 3) to just north of Ragged Point (SLO Co. PM 72.87) for the Elephant Trunk Drainage modification. The closure location change took place today, Monday, Oct. 23 at 6 am until Friday, Oct. 27 at 3 pm. Salmon Creek will not have public access this week.

The drainage modification is necessary at the recently completed Elephant Trunk Soldier Pile Wall project and consists of welding, hoisting and anchoring the drainage pipe on the hillside. This roadwork should be completed by 3 pm on Friday, Oct. 27, weather permitting.

* * * * * *

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Mud Creek had a major slide on Saturday, May 20, 2017, losing over 5 million cubic yards of material. Caltrans continues with its plan to realign the existing terrain. The projected timeline to safely open to public traffic is late-summer 2018 at an estimated cost of $40 million.

There is currently no public access through the Mud Creek area since this remains an active, emergency construction zone.

Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6)

Paul’s Slide is still active but the 24/7 traffic signal remains in place and temporary guardrail (k-rail) in the centerline.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge [PCB] (PM 45.52)

The new Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge opened on Friday, Oct. 13 at 1:10 pm following a heartfelt community event where dignitaries, media and various agencies were also invited to partake in the ribbon cutting ceremony. Final work will continue for several weeks but Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge now provides access to both locals and the public. There will be some weekdays that will require a lane closure consisting of one-way reversing traffic control.

REMINDER: Travelers still CANNOT access the entire length of Highway 1 from Carmel to Cambria but local businesses are open on both sides of Mud Creek and Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge.

Caltrans reminds motorists to move over and slow down when driving through highway work zones.

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Cow Cliffs (PM 28.35)

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52)

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52)

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Posted by: Stan Russell | October 17, 2017

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Tuesday, Oct. 17

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Tuesday, Oct. 17

The State Route 1 closure, due to Mud Creek slide, will move from its current location north of Salmon Creek, just south of the Ranger Station (Mon. Co. PM 3) to just north of Ragged Point (SLO Co. PM 78.87) for the Elephant Trunk Drainage modification. The closure location change will take place next week from Monday, Oct. 23 at 6 am until Friday, Oct. 27 at 3 pm. Salmon Creek will not be accessible next week.

The drainage modification is necessary at the recently completed Elephant Trunk Soldier Pile Wall project and consists of welding, hoisting and anchoring the drainage pipe on the hillside. This roadwork should be completed by 3 pm on Friday, Oct. 27, weather permitting.

Caltrans reminds motorists to move over and slow down when driving through highway work zones.

Susana Z. Cruz

Caltrans District 5

Public Information Officer

Portavoz de Relaciones Públicas

805.549.3138

Follow us on Facebook

Posted by: Stan Russell | October 13, 2017

STATE ROUTE 1 AT PFEIFFER CANYON BRIDGE COMPLETED

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge opened to public traffic today at 1:10 P.M.

Today’s Date: Friday, October 13, 2017
District: 05 – Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz Counties
Contact: Susana Cruz (bilingual) or Colin Jones
Phone: (805) 549-3138 or 549-3189

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

STATE ROUTE 1 AT PFEIFFER CANYON BRIDGE COMPLETED

Longest Steel Bridge over a Canyon in California

BIG SUR, MONTEREY COUNTY– Caltrans along with state leaders and local partners celebrated the completion of the State Route 1 Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge project, just eight months after the bridge was damaged by harsh winter storms. The new $24 million single-span steel bridge replaces the 49-year-old concrete bridge which was demolished in March.

“We’re very excited to bring vital highway access back to locals and visitors only seven months after the former bridge was demolished,” said Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty. “It’s a project that would normally take several years to complete,” he added.

This bridge was recognized as an Accelerated Bridge Construction project, new to California and the Big Sur Community. Dozens of bridge workers worked long hours, mostly 6-7 days a week since the end of March to complete the bridge. The signature feature of the new structure is 15 steel girders fabricated in Vallejo, weighing 62 tons each that span the rugged, 310-foot canyon. Its design includes no support columns, eliminating structural vulnerability from future slide activity. The new bridge has 12-foot lanes and 5-foot outside shoulders making it accessible for all travelers.

The slide at Pfeiffer Canyon was one of three major landslides that impacted State Route 1 in Monterey County due to record rainfall this past winter. Paul’s Slide, located 24 miles south of Pfeiffer Canyon remains active with public access provided by a temporary traffic signal. Closer to the San Luis Obispo/Monterey County line is the Mud Creek slide, which totaled over 5 million cubic yards of material. A realignment project at that location has begun with completion of a new roadway expected by late summer of 2018.

The prime contractor for the $24 million Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge emergency replacement project was Golden State Bridge Company in Benicia, CA.

(more)

 

Before

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Autumn Woolworth | Public Affairs | Caltrans District 5
Phone: 805.549.3461 | Fax: 805.549.3326 | Follow us on Facebook
We welcome your feedback: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RNBZG55

STATE ROUTE 1 PFEIFFER CANYON BRIDGE RIBBON CUTTING CEREMONY

Friday, October 13, 2017 Time: 10 am (bridge open by 5 pm)

Location: State Route 1, Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge

Please join Caltrans, the Big Sur Community and honored guests in celebrating the completion of the State Route 1 Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge Project in Monterey County.

1. Welcome and Introductions--MC, Monterey County Supervisor District 5 Mary Adams

2. Speakers

Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty

Big Sur Chamber Director Kirk Gafill

Monterey Co. CVB President and CEO Tammy Blount

Coastal Property Owners’ Association Butch Kronlund

CA Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird

State Senator Bill Monning

Assemblymember Anna Caballero

Golden State Bridge President Dave Riccitiello

3. Ribbon Cutting

4. Vehicle/Bike/Ped Procession Across Bridge

5. Refreshments/Music/Camaraderie

Safe parking is along the shoulder areas of Highway 1 on either end of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge, please do not block lanes; expect a minimum ¼-mile walk to the event. Limited parking is also available in Lots 1-4 at Big Sur Pfeiffer State Park (47555 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920) just north of the bridge. A shuttle will be provided to transport guests to the ribbon-cutting. Ridesharing is strongly encouraged to minimize amount of vehicles in area. Guests are advised to wear comfortable walking shoes.

Below are the links to Google Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge and Pfeiffer Big Sur State Park maps. Please also check the last link, the state park website for parking fees.

https://goo.gl/maps/4TMCPkQC2qT2

http://www.parks.ca.gov/pages/570/files/pfeiffer_campground_map.pdf

https://www.parks.ca.gov/?page_id=570

REMINDER

All vehicles parked on the east and west sides of the Highway 1 right of way, between the south side of Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge and the turn-around across from the US Post Office must be moved no later than midnight, Wednesday, October 11, 2017. This is necessary to facilitate the opening of Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge to public access on Friday, October 13, 2017. Any vehicle parked in this area after midnight on Wednesday, October 11, 2017, will be subject to ticketing and towing, if necessary. Please pass the word to your neighbors.

Posted by: Stan Russell | October 9, 2017

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Tuesday, Oct. 9

Photos of: 1) Mud Creek (PM 8.9) and Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) on Oct. 4-PCB image courtesy of Kyle Evans.

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Tuesday, Oct. 9

The new Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) will open by 5 pm on Friday, Oct. 13 assuming there will be no issues involving weather/material/equipment. After the bridge opening, Highway 1 in Monterey County will provide 35 additional miles of Hwy. 1 for travelers to Gorda (PM 10). State Route 1 remains closed from north of Salmon Creek, just south of the Ranger Station (PM 3) to just south of Gorda (PM 10) due to the Mud Creek slide. State Route 1 south of Salmon Creek is accessible via State Route 1 in San Luis Obispo County near Ragged Point.

REMINDER: Travelers still CANNOT access the entire length of Highway 1 from Carmel to Cambria but local businesses are open on both sides of Mud Creek.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge [PCB] (PM 45.52)

Final work to continue for several weeks but Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge will provide access to both locals and the public by 5 pm on Friday, Oct. 13, assuming there will be no issues involving weather/material/equipment. There will be some weekdays that will require a lane closure consisting of one-way reversing traffic control but once the bridge opens, it won’t need to fully close. See attached program regarding ribbon-cutting event details.

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Mud Creek had a major slide on Saturday, May 20, 2017, losing over 5 million cubic yards of material. Caltrans continues with its plan to realign the existing terrain. The projected timeline to safely open to public traffic is late-summer 2018 at an estimated cost of $40 million.

There is currently no public access through the Mud Creek area since this remains an active, emergency construction zone.

Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6)

Paul’s Slide is still active but the 24/7 traffic signal remains in place and temporary guardrail (k-rail) in the centerline.

Caltrans reminds motorists to move over and slow down when driving through highway work zones.

Susana Z. Cruz

Caltrans District 5

Public Information Officer

Portavoz de Relaciones Públicas

805.549.3138

Follow us on Facebook

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52)

Program – Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge Ribbon Cutting Event – 10.13.17.pdf

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

Photos: 1- of Mud Creek (PM 8.9) from Tuesday, Sept. 19. 2- of Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6)—signal installation in place Sept. 27. 3-4 of Pfeiffer Canyon (PM 45.52) Drainage Installation and Abutment 2 Reinforcement. The following You Tube video shows pouring the concrete deck for the new Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge. 11pm-2:30am when this video was shot. The pour lasted from Friday night Sept. 22 until Saturday afternoon, September 23, 2017. Video courtesy of Kyle Evans for Caltrans. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jgw2EU8qFeA

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Tuesday, Oct. 3

The new Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) will open to public near end of the day on Friday, Oct. 13 with details to follow, assuming there will be no issues involving weather/material/equipment. After the bridge opening, Highway 1 in Monterey County will provide 35 additional miles of Hwy. 1 for travelers to Gorda (PM 10). State Route 1 remains closed from north of Salmon Creek, just south of the Ranger Station (PM 3) to just south of Gorda (PM 10) due to the Mud Creek slide. State Route 1 south of Salmon Creek is accessible via State Route 1 in San Luis Obispo County near Ragged Point.

REMINDER: Travelers still CANNOT access the entire length of Highway 1 from Carmel to Cambria but local businesses are open on both sides of Mud Creek.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge [PCB] (PM 45.52)

Final work to continue for several weeks but Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge will provide access to both locals and the public by 5 pm on Friday, Oct. 13, assuming there will be no issues involving weather/material/equipment. There will be some weekdays that will require a lane closure consisting of one-way reversing traffic control but once the bridge opens, it won’t need to fully close. More details to come about the ribbon-cutting event.

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Mud Creek had a major slide on Saturday, May 20, 2017, losing over 5 million cubic yards of material. Caltrans continues with its plan to realign the existing terrain. The projected timeline to safely open to public traffic is late-summer 2018 at an estimated cost of $40 million.

There is currently no public access through the Mud Creek area since this remains an active, emergency construction zone.

Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6)

Paul’s Slide is still active but the 24/7 one-way reversing traffic control with flaggers has been replaced by a traffic signal installed Thursday, Sept. 28 and temporary guardrail (k-rail) in the centerline.

Caltrans reminds motorists to move over and slow down when driving through highway work zones.

Susana Z. Cruz

Caltrans District 5

Public Information Officer

Portavoz de Relaciones Públicas

805.549.3138

Follow us on Facebook

Big Sur Chamber of Commerce
PO Box 87
Big Sur, CA 93920
(831) 667-2100
http://www.bigsurcalifornia.org
http://www.thebigsurblog.com
http://www.twitter.com/BigSurCC
https://www.facebook.com/BigSurInformation

Hello Big Sur!

The parking area at Big Sur Station for local residents who are using the bypass trail is at full capacity and demand for available spots is increasing with additional employees and contractors being recalled to work on the south side in anticipation of the upcoming opening of Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge. Additionally, with this additional demand for parking, there has been an increase in illegal parking in the fire lanes and in or near environmentally sensitive habitat.

As there is no additional parking available at this location, the Big Sur Chamber of Commerce and the Los Padres National Forest Association are urging employees, contractors, and residents to carpool whenever possible and to only park in designated parking areas.

Thank you,

Kirk Gafill

President

Big Sur Chamber of Commerce

Posted by: Stan Russell | September 25, 2017

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Monday, Sept. 25

Photos: 1of Mud Creek (PM 8.9) from last Tuesday, Sept. 19, aerial courtesy of John Madonna. 2-3 of Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) showing the bridge deck pour from last Friday night, Sept. 22. Bridge deck pour video, courtesy of Kyle Evans at: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B_X4C9Oiv3VvNHFvdGUxOG9GLWM

HIGHWAY 1 UPDATE – Monday, Sept. 25:

Highway 1 in Monterey County continues to provide 35 total miles of Hwy. 1 to the public from south of Gorda (PM 10) to just south of Pfeiffer Canyon (PM 45.5), accessible only via Nacimiento-Fergusson Road. State Route 1 remains closed from north of Salmon (just south of the Ranger Station (PM 3) to just south of Gorda (PM 10) due to the Mud Creek event. State Route 1 south of Salmon Creek is accessible via State Route 1 in San Luis Obispo County, past Ragged Point to Salmon Creek.

REMINDER: Travelers CANNOT travel the entire length of Highway 1 but local businesses are open on both sides of the closure points at Pfeiffer Canyon and Salmon Creek.

Mud Creek (PM 8.9)

Mud Creek had a major slide on Saturday, May 20, 2017, losing 5 million cubic yards of material. Caltrans continues with its plan to realign the existing terrain. The projected timeline to safely open to public traffic is late-summer 2018 at an estimated cost of $40 million.

There is currently no public access through the Mud Creek area since this remains an active construction zone.

Paul’s Slide (PM 21.6)

Paul’s Slide is still active but the 24/7 one-way reversing traffic control with flaggers has been replaced by a traffic signal and temporary guardrail (k-rail) in the centerline.

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge [PCB] (PM 45.52)

The bridge construction continues with the preparation to cast the approach slab at abutment 2 (north side); setting of bridge rail posts; stripping of forms and roadway grading at Abutment 1 (south side). The opening of the new bridge is scheduled in mid-October.

Caltrans reminds motorists to move over and slow down when driving through highway work zones.

For more information on this project and for traffic updates on other Caltrans projects in Monterey County, residents can call the District 5 toll freenumber at 1-831-423-0396 or can visit our website at: http://www.dot.ca.gov/dist05/paffairs/release.htm#mon.

Susana Z. Cruz

Caltrans District 5

Public Information Officer

Portavoz de Relaciones Públicas

para Caltrans en el Distrito 5

805.549.3138

805.549.3326–fax

Follow us on Facebook

We welcome your feedback: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/RNBZG55

Mud Creek (PM 8.9) from last Tuesday, Sept. 19, aerial courtesy of John Madonna

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) showing the bridge deck pour from last Friday night, Sept. 22

Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge (PM 45.52) showing the bridge deck pour from last Friday night, Sept. 22

Posted by: Stan Russell | September 20, 2017

California condors return to the skies after near extinction


California condors return to the skies after near extinction

BIG SUR, Calif. (AP) — In a remote, rugged valley overlooking the Pacific Ocean, researchers closely monitor an endangered icon: the California condor.

The giant vultures flap their wings and circle the sky before perching on branches and observing their observers. Wildlife biologist Amy List uses a handheld antenna to track the birds, which wear radio transmitters and numbered tags.

Ventana Wildlife Society executive director Kelly Sorenson, right, and wildlife biologist Amy List monitor California condors on June 21. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

“If we don’t know what they’re doing, we don’t know what’s going wrong,” said List, who works for the Ventana Wildlife Society, which manages the condor sanctuary in Big Sur.

Three decades after being pushed to the brink of extinction, the California condor is making a comeback in the wild, but constant vigilance is needed to ensure the endangered bird doesn’t reverse course.

One of the world’s largest birds with a wingspan up to 10 feet, the condor once patrolled the sky from Mexico to British Columbia. But its population plummeted in the 20th century due to lead poisoning, hunting and habitat destruction.

In 1987, wildlife officials captured the last remaining 22 condors and took them to the San Diego and Los Angeles zoos to be protected and bred in captivity.

Those efforts have led to a slow but steady recovery for a species that reproduces slowly compared with other birds. There are now roughly 450 condors, including about 270 in the wild in California, Arizona, Utah and northeastern Mexico.

YOUTUBE VIDEO http://bit.ly/2wGRtqa

Plans also are underway to release some captive-bred condors in Redwood National Park in 2019 to establish a population near the California-Oregon border.

Federal officials said in August that for the first time in nearly 40 years, condors were roosting in the Blue Ridge National Wildlife Refuge, expanding to their historical range in the southern Sierra Nevada.

A California condor takes flight in the Ventana Wilderness. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Another milestone was reached this summer: the first “third generation” condor was born in the wild in California since the 1980s.

“We’re seeing very encouraging results that the condors can become self-sustaining again,” said Kelly Sorenson, who heads the conservation group.

While condors still face threats from exposure to mercury and the pesticide DDT, biologists say the biggest danger is lead ammunition, which can poison the scavengers when they eat dead animals shot with lead bullets. California banned the use of lead ammunition near condor feeding grounds in 2008 and will be the first state to ban lead bullets in all hunting in 2019.

Wildlife biologist Amy List shows some lead bullets like the ones that kill California condors after the bird eats a contaminated carcass. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

“We’re already starting to see fewer lead deaths. The condors are surviving longer. Their blood-lead levels are coming down,” Sorenson said.

Some gun owners complain that copper bullets are more expensive and less effective than lead and point to other possible sources of lead, such as paint and metal garbage.

“Condors are getting lead poisoning. The question is, are they getting it from lead ammunition?” said Chuck Michel, president of the California Pistol and Rifle Association.

Meanwhile, the San Diego Zoo celebrated the birth of its 200th condor this year.

“While we were caring for the birds, trying to protect them and provide sanctuary, we were literally writing the book how you propagate a species, how you genetically manage it and prepare it for release back in the wild,” Michael Mace, the zoo’s birds curator.

California condors huddle around a watering hole in the Ventana Wilderness east of Big Sur, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

After up to a year at the zoo, chicks are taken to a release site such as the Big Sur sanctuary, where a flock has grown to about 90 condors that travel between Big Sur and Pinnacles National Park. They scavenge, breed and raise chicks on their own, under the close watch of List, the wildlife biologist, and her colleagues.

“I hope that I’m out of a job soon because condors don’t need to be managed in the future,” she said. “I hope that they’re self-sustaining and wild and free, and nobody needs to trap or tag or monitor them at all.”

In this Wednesday, June 21, 2017 photo, Ventana Wildlife Society executive director Kelly Sorenson poses for a portrait inside a cabin used by researchers to study California condors in the Ventana Wilderness east of Big Sur, Calif. Three decades after being pushed to the brink of extinction, the California condor is staging an impressive comeback, thanks to captive-breeding programs and reduced use of lead ammunition near their feeding grounds. “We’re seeing very encouraging results that the condors can become self-sustaining again,” said Sorenson. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

In this Wednesday, June 21, 2017 photo, Wildlife biologist Amy List observes California condors up close from inside an enclosure in the Ventana Wilderness east of Big Sur, Calif. Three decades after being pushed to the brink of extinction, the California condor is staging an impressive comeback, thanks to captive-breeding programs and reduced use of lead ammunition near their feeding grounds. “If we don’t know what they’re doing, we don’t know what’s going wrong,” said List. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

In this Wednesday, June 21, 2017 photo, a California condor sits perched on a tree branch in the Ventana Wilderness east of Big Sur, Calif. Three decades after being pushed to the brink of extinction, the California condor is staging an impressive comeback, thanks to captive-breeding programs and reduced use of lead ammunition near their feeding grounds. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

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