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Draft environmental report finds no major issues in Belvedere roads project

Updated: Oct 12, 2022

Belvedere’s $20-million plan to install sheet piling along San Rafael Avenue and Beach Road to prevent failure in a major earthquake, which could damage buried utilities and render the roads impassable to residents and first-responders, has no impacts that can’t be reduced to less-than-significant levels, according to the draft environmental report released last week.

The 380-page draft’s 45-day public-review period runs through Nov. 28, with at least two public meetings slated during that time: The city’s citizen-oversight committee is set to meet for the first time at Oct. 12 to hear a report summary and accept public comment, with its next meeting Oct. 21. The City Council will also hold a hearing on the draft report and accept public comment at its 5:30 p.m. Nov. 9 meeting, less than 24 hours after Election Day polls close and voters decide the project’s fate.

San Rafael Avenue and Beach Road were built some 80 years ago on bay mud that, according to Miller Pacific Engineering Group’s 2019 geotechnical investigation, is subject to liquefaction, while the roads have sunk about 4 feet since construction, with another half a foot of settlement expected over the next 30 years and 1.2 feet over the next 100 years. An earlier study conducted in 2014, using Federal Emergency Management Agency Cooperating Technical Partner program grant funding, also found settlement produced undulations in the roads that created some 2 feet in disparity between high and low road-surface levels.

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