Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Boardwalk construction

Construction is progressing, although the CCC crew wasn't out there on Monday. When it's done, it'll be approximately 1700 feet long and comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. I've become more aware of how important that is through my work at the Moonstone Beach Boradwalk. We trim weeds there, to keep the boardwalk clear. People walking with canes, or walkers, or in wheelchairs thank us for making it possible for them to get out there. Weeds and rocks are a real barrier to those who have mobility impairments.
This picture shows where the boardwalk will be relative to the highway. The first 175 feet take it past the culvert that the seals sometimes go through and get to the other side of the highway. They'll build a rock retaining wall at the south end of that section, to shore it up and improve the grade.

The next 130 feet will be composite lumber. Then 100 feet of rock wall trail tread support, whatever that is. The next 670 feet, out past where the trail now ends, will be aggregate, ending at a 200-foot retaining wall on the south side of the parking lot. I expect there will be access at that end as well as from the current parking lot.

That will be an improvement for busy times of the year. On Memorial Day weekend, cars occasionally were stacked in the left turn lane, waiting to get into the parking lot.

Viewing platforms will be built at key locations along an existing trail adjacent to and between two Caltrans operated parking lots in San Simeon State Park. The boardwalk will be constructed of recycled plastic and pressure-treated wood to resist decay. The entire boardwalk project will be constructed on upland fill along an abandoned roadbed and adjacent to the existing parking lots. The boardwalk will improve public access, eliminate use of a volunteer trail system, protect natural resources, and provide platforms at key locations for elephant seal viewing and interpretation.

The elephant seals take no notice of any changes. Here they are on the beach on Monday, right, although no active work was going on that day. The line across the photo is part of the fencing.

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