sundaystreets_lg.jpgIn a post on his blog today, Akit observed that it has been about six months since the southbound stretch of Great Highway between Sloat and Skyline Boulevards had been closed. The stretch became dangerous during the winter of 2009, when the shore began to erode and the integrity of the road was jeopardized. The original plan was to reopen the two southbound lanes by summer, and Akit wondered, since it’s summer, now, when the street would be back in business.

The stretch closed this January after the San Francisco Department of Public Works declared the erosion to be a state of emergency, and was closed for safety reasons and so that protective measures could be taken for the Lake Merced Wastewater Tunnel.

Original damage to the cliff included the fall of more than 30 feet of the hillside near the southbound lanes of the Great Highway. The southbound lanes have been temporarily realigned into one lane. The current detour from the highway is east at Sloat, where, according to Akit, “drivers have been driving like aggressive maniacs,” and raising fears that pedestrians crossing Sloat are endangered by making this city street a detour for highway traffic.

Alex Murillo from the Department of Public Works affirmed that the project will soon be undergoing Phase Two, which will provide a bluff top and face stabilization support system. Phase Two will also safely realign the southbound lanes and improve drainage.

The Department of Public Works plans to start on Phase Two within the next 45 to 60 days, once the technical reports have been finalized.

“We should be opening the first southbound lane about a month after we start construction – hopefully in August,” Murillo said in a phone interview this morning.

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