KBUU NEWS: Caltrans Says Drivers To Malibu Face 4 More Weeks Of Traffic Misery On PCH

Written by on May 7, 2024

Frustrated motorists will face at least one month of delays on PCH heading towards Malibu, while the state designs and then constructs a restriping project around a mudslide that started 65 years ago.
In a news release issued Tuesday morning, Caltrans today confirmed plans for a slight detour around the “beach squeeze” at the Tramonto Landslide, a collapsing hillside that has been moving towards and onto the highway for 70 years.
The state also said it has been designing a permanent solution for the slumping hillside since 2010, but has been unable to execute a plan because of a complicated real estate issue uphill, where the slide originates.
Since mid February. mud has moved onto and blocked one of the two westbound lanes used by more than 40,000 vehicle per day to cram into.
Inexplicably, the state says “there is no estimated start date for construction at this time, but Caltrans recognizes the severely negative impact to traffic flow and commuters and is expediting the preparation process.”
And once construction starts, it will take two weeks to grind the old stripes off the pavement, and repaint the highway, the state said today.
The slide originated up the hill from state property, although it continues to encroach onto Caltrans right of way.
The top of the landslide is a privately-owned series of lots and former streets owned by the City of Los Angeles, remnants of subdivision built in the 1920s that quickly began sliding towards the ocean.
A joint study was done in 2010 by Caltrans and the City of Los Angeles that documented the history of the slide, the state says. It recommended that long-term repairs start from the top of the slide.
Since then, the private landowners have proposed shoring up the hillside and building five houses, but the city of LA has not approved the settlement.
But as for removing the dirt from the roadway, Caltrans says its Geotechnical Division waited for weeks for this most recent slide to dry out, and then determined that the unstable nature of the slide prevents Caltrans from removing the debris from the right lane of the highway.
The state says repairs still need to start from the top of the slide, which is outside of its jurisdiction and right of way.

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