Caltrans Gives Somber News Re: TCB

TTC-Meeting-4-17-24

The Topanga Town Council’s April 17th meeting focused entirely on the Topanga Canyon Boulevard (TCB) road closure. A record number of people (over 385) came to hear why the canyon isn’t already opened and to share their feelings on the matter. The meeting proved fruitful as many concerns were discussed with local officials. The meeting’s highlight was the Caltrans geologist giving a presentation on the slide and the news is—the slide is still sliding. And there is a boulder at the top about the size of a car.

Lots of questions were asked and some answers were given, with other answers coming as reports are concluded. The bottom line is that the road repairs may not be completed until the fall, but the goal is to get at least one lane open when its safe to do so.  It’s just not safe at this time. With that said, there was encouraging support from government officials and creative ideas were tossed about.

The Town Council will continue to give updates and contact info when information becomes available.  The next Town Council meeting on Wednesday, May 15 at 6:00pm will be virtual and will again feature Caltrans and government representatives.  To receive a meeting link, email us.  (If you are already on our newsletter eblast, no need to email us.)

For a quick read, see the Meeting Summary here.

Play the meeting video above, or watch it on YouTube. A video segment timeline and other helpful info are below. More follow-up information and additional contacts forthcoming.

Fire Department:0:06:22
Addresses fire evacuation concerns.

TCEP: 0:29:55
Emergency communication in the canyon, fires not such a threat at this moment, evacuation plan updates will be revealed soon, new Topanga Evacuation Guide coming in the fall, upcoming drills and exercises.

Caltrans:0:33:39
Detailed presentation from Caltrans geologist, speaks to PCH/Tuna traffic signal, and other matters.

Broadband Project:1:13:35
Caltrans and Department of Technology upcoming broadband project.

Sheriff and CHP: 1:23:25
Speaks to traffic issues, including Tuna/PCH.

Topanga Fire Safe Council: 1:39:26
Importance of home hardening to address some fire concerns.

County Supervisor’s Office: 1:40:00
County addresses many of Topanga’s concerns; including evacuation, businesses programs, elevating the issue to upper government levels, and an aging program.

DPW Road Maintenance: 1:45:16
Presentation on county road maintenance, repairs, and timelines.

Possible funding opportunities: 2:00:10
County speaks on the emergency funding process.

State Representatives: 2:04:30
Reps from the offices of Senator Allen and Assemblywoman Irwin talk about their commitment to get TCB open as soon as possible, looking into possible funding avenues for small business loans, safety of the community and the workers.

Topanga Town Council: 2:17:29
Onetopanga.com and TCEP as an information source, need volunteers to help, need to develop a Topanga Playbook to handle future incidents in a more expeditious manner, request for a permanent traffic signal at Tuna/PCH for traffic immediate control during an emergency or fire, need to ensure CMS signs are positioned quickly and support local businesses.

Additional comments and questions:2:23:50
CMS signage, extending signal light timing on Tuna/PCH, danger of clearing landslides on TCB and PCH, Tuna Road safety concerns, school commute concerns, boulder the size of car may come down in the slide area, business evacuation plans, FEMA challenges and declarations, road work permit process and timeline, Caltrans updates need to be more often.(END OF VIDEO.)

CALTRANS NEWS RELEASE: 4/18/24 -SR-27 Landslide at Postmile 1.8 in Topanga Canyon

LOS ANGELES COUNTY — The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) announces that it estimates the massive landslide at postmile 1.8 on State Route 27 in Topanga Canyon will be cleared by fall 2024 if all things go well.

Latest Conditions:

• Water continues to seep out from underneath the dirt, mud and rocks, indicating the mass may move at a given moment. A rainstorm over this past weekend, April 13-14, further saturated the unstable hillside.

• A major landslide occurred adjacent to the current landslide in the 1940s. It’s unknown how long the roadway was closed at that time. The landslide that occurred March 9, 2024, is twice as large — the visible face is about 300 feet above the roadway but extends about 200 feet beyond that point into the brush.

• Due to present geological conditions and instability of the slope, material must be removed from the top down. Removing the “toe” of the slope will bring down the unstable earth and large boulders above as water is still percolating under the surface.

• A boulder that is about 10 feet high that is visible from the south side of the landslide is a safety concern. A crack has formed behind it that is about 5 to 10 feet wide, with the weight of the hillside pushing down on the boulder.

• A rough estimate of the landslide — just the visible face — is about 80,000 cubic yards and 9.2 million pounds. This is enough material to fill 5,500 dump trucks.

• SR-27 is closed from Grand View Drive to SR-1 (PCH).

• Temporary signal lights have been installed at Tuna Canyon Road and State Route 1 (Pacific Coast Highway). The signal provides a measure of safety for Topanga Canyon residents who need to access southbound PCH while SR-27 is closed.

• Caltrans is working with the county and elected officials to mitigate impacts to the community. The public can submit questions to Topanga@dot.ca.gov.

Motorists are advised to seek alternate routes. Caltrans recommends that U.S. Highway 101 is the safest alternative.Check here for QuickMap real-time traffic information.

TO RECEIVE TIMELY UPDATES

CALTRANS: Those at Caltrans have promised to give daily status updates regarding all road closures in our area and are committed to getting the roads open as soon as humanly possible. Real-time traffic information can be found at http://quickmap.dot.ca.gov/ and you can get road updates on X (formerly Twitter) at @CaltransDist7. The public can send questions directly to Caltrans at: Topanga@dot.ca.gov.

DPW: The Department of Public Works is responsible for roads other than the highways. You can report county road issues here.

TCEP: The volunteers at the Topanga Coalition for Emergency Preparedness have dedicated themselves to providing the community with verified and timely updates. You can get the updates via TCEP’s EMERGENCY STATUS website page and on their X page (formerly Twitter).

TOPANGA TOWN COUNCIL: Summary updates will be provided on OneTopanga.com. Current updates can be seen on OneTopanga.com’s X page (formerly Twitter) and Facebook.