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Ocean Beach Sand Maintenace_signedcatex

Ocean Beach Sand Maintenace_signedcatex

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Signed finding from San Francisco Planning Department that the Ocean Beach Sand Maintenance Project (or Sand Backpass Project) 2012 is categorically exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act. Includes supporting letters, maps and other documentation. From the San Francisco Planning Department's Bureau of Environmental Management.
Signed finding from San Francisco Planning Department that the Ocean Beach Sand Maintenance Project (or Sand Backpass Project) 2012 is categorically exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act. Includes supporting letters, maps and other documentation. From the San Francisco Planning Department's Bureau of Environmental Management.

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Published by: Ocean Beach Bulletin on Aug 20, 2012
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Bureau of Environmental Management1145 Market Street, 5th FloorSan Francisco, CA 94103
T
415.934.5700
F
415.934-5750
 July 18, 2012Diana Sokolove, Senior Environmental PlannerEnvironmental Planning DivisionSan Francisco Planning Department1650 Mission Street, Fourth FloorSan Francisco, CA 94103RE: CEQA Exemption Request forthe Ocean Beach SandMaintenance ProjectSFPUC Index Code:
 
CWWRNRTF47Planning Department Case:Dear Diana:The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) requests review of theproposed Ocean Beach Sand Maintenance Project (project) under the CaliforniaEnvironmental Quality Act (CEQA). The purposes of this letter are to: 1) Provide theEnvironmental Planning Division (EP) with information on the proposed project; and2) Request EP review and concurrence that the project is categorically exempt underCEQA.CEQA Guidelines Section 15304 provides exemptions for “Minor Alterations to Land.Class 4 consists of minor public or private alterations in the condition of land, waterand or vegetation which do not involve removal of healthy, mature, scenic trees exceptfor forestry or agricultural purposes”. The San Francisco Planning Department hasclarified that “stabilization of shorelines in areas that are not environmentally sensitiveis also included” under the Class 4 exemptions in “List of Projects that are GenerallyCategorically Exempt from Review Under the California Environmental Quality Act(CEQA)” adopted by the Planning Commission August 17, 2000.The following description of the proposed activities demonstrates the proposed projectwould not result in any adverse environmental effects, and provides support for ourrecommendation that the activities are categorically exempt under CEQA.The project would be conducted in compliance with applicable federal, State and localregulations and under contractual provision prohibiting work in violation of applicableregulations and plans. The Project would comply with all of the SFPUC StandardConstruction Measures, issued February 7, 2007, which are on file at EP.
 
 
Diana Sokolove, Senior Environmental PlannerSan Francisco Planning Department
CEQA Exemption Request for the Ocean Beach Sand Maintenance Project July 18, 2012Page 3
BACKGROUND
The purposes of the proposed project are: (1) to remove sand from in front of theO’Shaughnessy Seawall in order to reduce future sand maintenance efforts; (2)maintain public access on the promenade and stairwells that have been blocked bysand build-up; (3) provide bluff protection in high risk areas that threaten The City ofSan Francisco’s infrastructure; (4) enhance beach access in the erosion hotspot areasouth of Sloat Boulevard; and (5) reduce the need to implement more engineered bluffprotection measures in the short-term.Since the 1970s due to various natural and manmade factors, the beach at the northernend of Ocean Beach has been widening while the southern end has been shrinking. Theeffects are especially notable during the spring, when shifting winds and currentsaccumulate sand and create large sand mounds in the north while the beach hasrecedes by many feet in the south.Sand aggradation at the northern end of Ocean Beach this season has resulted in sandovertopping the O’Shaughnessy Seawall and accumulating in the parking lot andalong the Great Highway, burying stairways and impeding access along thepromenade. Currently the sand is in excess of 13 feet deep at the face of the seawall. Ithas been estimated that over 200,000 cubic yards of excess sand have accumulatedwithin a 4,200-foot long reach of beach.At the same time, the bluffs from Santiago Street to Fort Funston are eroding at anunprecedented rate. The City of San Francisco (City) has placed approximately 1,000feet of temporary rock revetments in two critical places south of Sloat Boulevard overthe past 15 years. However erosion from storms each year requires constantmaintenance of the bluffs to protect the City’s wastewater and transportationinfrastructure.To address the issues of excess sand and sand deficit at opposite ends of Ocean Beach,the National Park Service (NPS) Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA) inconjunction with two City departments, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission(SFPUC) and Department of Public Works (DPW) propose to transport approximately100,000 cubic yards (cy) of sand annually, over a period of up to five years, (dependingon the performance of the newly created sand berms), from the beach west of theO’Shaughnessy Seawall to the erosion hot spots south of Sloat Boulevard to providetemporary shoreline stabilization and protection for the SFPUC Lake Merced TransportTunnel, a critical wastewater facility, as well as the Great Highway.NPS and the City are actively participating in the comprehensive planning efforts atOcean Beach led by San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association (SPUR),which aim to develop long-term solutions that would address the complicated land
 
Diana Sokolove, Senior Environmental PlannerSan Francisco Planning Department
CEQA Exemption Request for the Ocean Beach Sand Maintenance Project July 18, 2012Page 4use, resource protection, public recreation, and shoreline stabilization issues at OceanBeach. The proposed project would serve as an interim measure until a morepermanent solution is developed.NPS owns and manages Ocean Beach as part of the GGNRA, the SFPUC operates theCity’s wastewater infrastructure, notably the Lake Merced Transport Tunnel locatedunder the Great Highway, and DPW maintains the Great Highway.The GGNRA has initiated and will complete National Environmental Policy Act(NEPA) compliance for the proposed project and will pursue issuance of necessarypermits to implement the proposed project.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PROPOSED PROJECT
The proposed project involves excavation of sand at the beach along theO’Shaughnessy Seawall, transporting the sand via 30 cubic yard (cy) dump trucks, andplacing the sand west of the bluffs south of Sloat Boulevard for temporary protectionfrom erosion during high wave winter storm events.Excavator, loader, and bulldozers would be used to move and load sand into 30 cubic-yard articulated off road dump trucks from the area of excavation indicated on Figure1. The areas to be excavated would approximately 150-200 feet wide, 4,200 feet long,and to a maximum depth of 13 feet. Equipment would enter and exit through an accesspoint at the south end of the O’Shaughnessy Seawall near Lincoln Boulevard.The proposed project would place sand on an approximately 0.5 mile stretch of bluffsouth of Sloat Boulevard. The project would prioritize sand placement at two differentlocations, the bluffs approximately 600 feet south of Sloat Boulevard, which is knownas Reach 3 as identified in the 2011
Lake Merced Tunnel/Great Highway/Ocean BeachEmergency Project Design Report prepared
for the SFPUC by Moffat and Nichols, andanother area approximately 2,000 feet south of Sloat Boulevard, identified as Reach 2 inthe same report, west of the Great Highway from the SFPUC’s Oceanside WaterPollution Control Plant. The reach selected for sand placement would depend uponthe erosion rate and bluff protection needs in a given year. Reaches 2 and 3 have beenidentified as the locations where the Lake Merced Transport Tunnel and the GreatHighway are most threatened by erosion. If excess sand is available after placement atReaches 2 and 3, it would be placed in other adjacent shoreline areas.A sacrificial berm (maximum dimensions 60 feet wide by 1,400 feet long, and 30 feetdeep) would be established each year to protect the eroding bluffs. The height of the berm would not exceed the elevation of the adjacent parking lot and Great Highway.Sand would be dumped from the top of the bluff and spread by bulldozers and loadersas required. The berm would cover an area of the existing rock revetment and alsocreate sand ladders for beach access. Design of the berm would place approximately 70

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