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SF’s Great Highway Blocked By Sand Dunes (Again)

“As long as we get high winds, we’re going to get sand on the Great Highway”
By - posted 3/2/2023 No Comment

By Thomas Hughes Bay City News Foundation

Southbound lanes on the Great Highway in San Francisco remained closed Wednesday after sand accumulated over the weekend due to high winds and rain.

The roadway was kept closed on Monday morning in both directions as crews from the San Francisco Department of Public Works began cleaning up using front loaders and mechanical sweepers.

The northbound lanes were reopened by noon Monday, but the southbound lanes closer to the beach had accumulations at multiple locations that need clearing, according to Public Works spokesperson Rachel Gordon. The road was already closed Monday as part of the city’s regular weekend Slow Streets program.

Gordon said the southbound lanes are expected to be open by Friday.

She said sand had accumulated at Sloat Boulevard and Judah, Noriega, Taraval, and Vicente streets.

Gordon said the road had been subject to several closures during recent winter storms, but the federally protected land restricted the city’s ability to add drainage channels to alleviate inevitable flooding. That left public works crews to wait for water to naturally drain.

As for the sand, Gordon said the effort can feel Sisyphean at times.

As long as we get high winds, we’re going to get sand on the Great Highway,” she said. “We don’t want to wall off our beach in San Francisco.”

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