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Environmental & Resource Protection
East Cliff Drive Bluff Protection and Parkway Project

Table of Contents

Section

ES. Executive Summary

  • Introduction
  • Purpose and Need (Chapter 1)
  • Project History
  • Public Involvement Process
  • Proposed Projects and Alternatives Considered (Chapter 2)
    • No Action Alternative
    • Alternative 1: Full Bluff Armoring (Preferred Alternative)
    • Alternative 2: Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Parkway Improvements
    • Alternative 3: Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Parkway Improvements
    • Alternative 4: Groins and Notch Infilling
    • Environmentally Preferable/Superior Alternative
  • Permit and Review Requirements
  • Comparison of Alternatives, Including Impacts and Mitigation
  • Affected Environment (Chapters 3 through 14)
  • Environmental Consequences (Chapters 3 through 14)
  • Cumulative Impacts (Chapter 15)
  • Consultation and Coordination (Chapter 16)
  • References, List of Preparers, Glossary and Index (Chapters 17, 18, 19 and 20)
  • Summary of Potential Significant Environmental Consequences and Mitigation Measures

1. Purpose of and Need for Action

  • 1.1 Introduction
  • 1.2 Projects
  • 1.3 Purpose and Need
    • 1.3.1 Physical Integrity of the Bluffs
    • 1.3.2 Geologic Background
  • 1.4 Project Area
  • 1.5 Project History
  • 1.6 Use of a Joint NEPA/CEQA Document
  • 1.7 Public Involvement Process

2. Proposed Project and Alternatives

  • 2.1 Proposed Project Overview
  • 2.2 Overview of Alternatives
    • 2.2.1 Alternative 1: Full Bluff Armoring (Preferred Alternative)
    • 2.2.2 Alternative 2: Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Parkway Improvements
    • 2.2.3 Alternative 3: Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Parkway Improvements
    • 2.2.4 Alternative 4: Groins and Notch Infilling
  • 2.3 No Action Alternative
  • 2.4 Alternatives and Alternative Components Considered but Eliminated
  • 2.4.1 Bluff Protection Measures
  • 2.4.2 Road and Parkway Improvements
  • 2.5 Alternatives Development
  • 2.6 Comparison of Alternatives
    • 2.6.1 Alternative 1: Full Bluff Armoring (Preferred Alternative)
    • 2.6.2 Alternative 2: Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Parkway Improvements
    • 2.6.3 Alternative 3: Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Parkway Improvements
    • 2.6.4 Alternative 4: Groins and Notch Infilling
  • 2.7 Environmentally Preferable/Environmentally Superior Alternative
  • 2.8 Permit and Review Requirements

3A Introduction to Resource Chapters 3 through 14

  • 3A-1 Introduction to Affected Environment and Environmental Consequences

3. Land Use

  • 3.1 Affected Environment
    • 3.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 3.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 3.1.3 Current Land Use
  • 3.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 3.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 3.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 3.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 3.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling(Alternative 4)
    • 3.2.5 No Action Alternative

4. Recreation

  • 4.1 Affected Environment
    • 4.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 4.1.2 Regulations and Permitting Requirements
    • 4.1.3 Existing Recreational Uses (See Section 6.1.6 for detailed discussion of waves, wave properties, and recreational waves)
  • 4.2 Environmental Consequences (See Section 6.2 for detailed discussion of impacts on Recreational Wave Breaks)
    • 4.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 4.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 4.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 4.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 4.2.5 No Action Alternative

5. Visual Resources

  • 5.1 Affected Environment
    • 5.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 5.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 5.1.3 Significant Visual Features, Scenic Corridors, and Public Views/Vistas
    • 5.1.4 Visual Landscape
  • 5.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 5.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 5.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 5.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 5.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 5.2.5 No Action Alternative

6. Geological Resources and Coastal Processes

  • 6.1 Affected Environment
    • 6.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 6.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 6.1.3 Geologic Setting
    • 6.1.4 Soils
    • 6.1.5 Seismicity
    • 6.1.6 Waves and Currents
    • 6.1.7 Bluff Erosion
    • 6.1.8 Project Area Bluff Conditions
    • 6.1.9 Sand Movement (Sources and Transport)
    • 6.1.10 Beach Formation
    • 6.1.11 Issues That May Affect Bluff Protection Structures
  • 6.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 6.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 6.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 6.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 6.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling(Alternative 4)
    • 6.2.5 No Action Alternative

7. Water Resources

  • 7.1 Affected Environment
    • 7.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 7.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 7.1.3 Climate
    • 7.1.4 Storm Waves
    • 7.1.5 Surface Water Features and Drainage (Onshore)
    • 7.1.6 Surface Water Quality
    • 7.1.7 Hydrodynamics and Circulation (Monterey Bay and Nearshore)
    • 7.1.8 Groundwater Occurrence and Movement
  • 7.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 7.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 7.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 7.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 7.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 7.2.5 No Action Alternative

8. Biological Resources

  • 8.1 Affected Environment
    • 8.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 8.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 8.1.3 Biological Setting
    • 8.1.4 Vegetation/Habitat Types
    • 8.1.5 Wildlife Resources
  • 8.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 8.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 8.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 8.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 8.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 8.2.5 No Action Alternative

9. Transportation

  • 9.1 Transportation
    • 9.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 9.1.2 Regulatory Consideration
    • 9.1.3 Roadways
    • 9.1.4 Sidewalks and Crosswalks
    • 9.1.5 Pathways and Bikeways
    • 9.1.6 Circulation and Access Provisions
    • 9.1.7 Traffic Volumes
    • 9.1.8 Parking Conditions
    • 9.1.9 Transit Service
  • 9.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 9.2.1 Alternative 1 (Full Bluff Armoring)
    • 9.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 9.2.3  Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Parkway Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 9.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 9.2.5 No Action Alternative

10. Emergency Services

  • 10.1 Affected Environment
    • 10.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 10.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 10.1.3 Existing Emergency Services
  • 10.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 10.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 10.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 10.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 10.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 10.2.5 No Action Alternative

11. Cultural and Paleontological Resources

  • 11.1 Affected Environment
    • 11.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 11.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 11.1.3 Cultural Resources Overview
    • 11.1.4 Cultural Resources in the Project Area
    • 11.1.5 Paleontology
    • 11.1.6 Project Area Paleontology
  • 11.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 11.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 11.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 11.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 11.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 11.2.5 No Action Alternative

12.AirQuality

  • 12.1 Affected Environment
    • 12.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 12.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 12.1.3 Existing Air Quality Conditions
    • 12.1.4 Sensitive Receptors
  • 12.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 12.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 12.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 12.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 12.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 12.2.5 No Action Alternative

13. Noise

  • 13.1 Affected Environment
    • 13.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 13.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 13.1.3 Existing Noise Environment
  • 13.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 13.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative1)
    • 13.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 13.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 13.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 13.2.5 No Action Alternative

14. Utilities

  • 14.1 Affected Environment
    • 14.1.1 Introduction/Region of Influence
    • 14.1.2 Regulatory Considerations
    • 14.1.3 Existing Utility Infrastructure
  • 14.2 Environmental Consequences
    • 14.2.1 Full Bluff Armoring (Alternative 1)
    • 14.2.2 Partial Bluff Armoring with Full Improvements (Alternative 2)
    • 14.2.3 Partial Bluff Armoring with Limited Improvements (Alternative 3)
    • 14.2.4 Groins and Notch Infilling (Alternative 4)
    • 14.2.5 No Action Alternative

15. Other Required Analyses

  • 15.1 Introduction
  • 15.2 Cumulative Projects and Impact
    • 15.2.1 Cumulative Impact Analysis Methodology
    • 15.2.2 Land Use
    • 15.2.3 Recreation
    • 15.2.4 Visual Resources
    • 15.2.5 Geological Resources and Coastal Process
    • 15.2.6 Water Resources
    • 15.2.7 Biological Resources
    • 15.2.8 Transportation and Safety
    • 15.2.9 Emergency Services
    • 15.2.10 Paleontological and Cultural Resources
    • 15.2.11 Air Quality
    • 15.2.12 Noise
    • 15.2.13 Utilities
  • 15.3 Growth-Inducing Impact (CEQA)
  • 15.4 Relationship Between Local Short-term Uses of the Environment and Long-term Productivity (NEPA)
  • 15.5 Irreversible and Irretrievable Commitments of Resources
  • 15.6 Environmental Justice and Environmental Health Safety Risks to Children
    • 15.6.1 Environmental Justice
    • 15.6.2 Environmental Health and Safety Risks to Children

16. Consultation and Coordination

  • 16.1 Agencies and Representatives Contacted
  • 16.2 Scoping
  • 16.3 2003 Draft EIS/EIR
  • 16.4 2006 Revised Draft EIS/EIR

17. References

18. Listof Preparers

  • 18.1 County of Santa Cruz
  • 18.2 US Army Corps of Engineers, San Francisco District (2003 EIS/EIR only)
  • 18.3 Tetra Tech (Contractor)
  • 18.4 Subconsultants

19. Glossary

20. Index

21. Introduction to Public Comments and Responses

  • 21.1 Introduction to Public Comments and Responses
  • 21.2 Index of Comments and Responses
  • 21.3 Public Comments and Responses

Pages 21-3 through 21-9

Pages 21-10 through 21-19

Pages 21-20 through 21-29

Pages 21-30 through 21-39

Pages 21-40 through 21-49

Pages 21-50 through 21-59

Pages 21-60 through 21-69

Pages 21-70 through 21-79

Pages 21-80 through 21-89

Pages 21-90 through 21-103
 

Appendices

Appendix

A Photo

B Public Involvement

C Public Scoping Letters

D Traffic Counts

E Biological Resources

F Parkway Maps

G Coastal Bluff Evaluation
 

Listof Figures

Figure

ES-1.......50-Year Summary

1-1.......Regional Location Map

1-2.......Projected Erosion Rates

1-3.......Project Area

2-1a.....Project Overview

2-1b.....Shoreline Change Rates

2-2.......Existing Traffic Volumes in Vicinity of East Cliff Drive

2-3.......Expected Traffic Volumes Following Reversal of One-way Traffic

2-4.......Soil Nail Wall Construction

2-5.......MSE Reinforcement

2-6.......Soil Nail Assembly

2-7.......Soil Nail Construction Method

2-8.......Map Legend for 2-9a-c

2-9a.....Project Site Map-Sheet 1

2-9b.....Project Site Map-Sheet 2

2-9c.....Project Site Map-Sheet 3

2-10.....Representative Cross Section of Bluff Protection Structure and ParkwayImprovements

2-11.....Stairway Beach Access

5-1a.....Existing Conditions-Bluff View

5-1b.....Existing Conditions-Ocean View

5-2a.....Alternative 1 Visual Simulation-Bluff View

5-2b.....Alternative 1 Visual Simulation-Ocean View

5-3a.....Alternative 2 Visual Simulation-Bluff View

5-3b.....Alternative 2 Visual Simulation-Ocean View

5-4a.....Alternative 3 Visual Simulation-Bluff View

5-4b.....Alternative 3 Visual Simulation-Ocean View

5-5a.....Alternative 4 Visual Simulation-Bluff View

5-5b.....Alternative 4 Visual Simulation-Ocean View

6-1.......Alternative 1 Erosion Estimates

6-2.......Alternative 2 Erosion Estimates

6-3.......Alternative 3 Erosion Estimates

6-4.......Alternative 4 Erosion Estimates

6-5.......No Action Time Sequence of Erosion

Listof Tables

Table

ES-1 .... Stairway Locations

ES-2 .... Summary of Project Alternatives

ES-3 ....East Cliff Drive Bluff Protection and Parkway Project Permit and Approval Requirements

ES-4 .... Summary of Significant Impacts from Project Alternatives

ES-5 .... Summary of Potential Significant Impacts and Mitigations

2-1 ...... Projected Increases in Residential Traffic Under One-Way Reversal

2-2 ...... Summary of Project Alternatives

2-3 ...... Stairway Locations

2-4 ...... Proposed Drainage Improvements

2-5 ......East Cliff Drive Bluff Protection and Parkway Project Permit and Approval Requirements

8-1 ......East Cliff Drive Project Area Observed Species List

8-2 ...... Likelihood of Occurrence of Santa Cruz County’s Special Status Plants in the Project ROI

8-3 ...... MBTA and MMPA Species Potentially occurring within the ROI

8-4 ...... Likelihood of Occurrence of Special Status Wildlife Species in the Project ROI

9-1 ...... Peak Hour East Cliff Drive Traffic Volumes, November2005

9-2 ...... Peak Hour Pedestrian and Bicycle Volumes, November 2005

12-1 .... Federal and State Ambient Air Quality Standards

12-2 .... Project-Related Vehicle Emissions and Thresholds of Significance

13-1 .... Typical Construction Site Noise Levels

15-1 .... Past, Present, and Future Armoring Projects in Santa Cruz County

Listof Acronyms

 

Acronym

Full Phrase

 

CAA

Clean Air Act

Caltrans

California Department of Transportation

Cal.Pub.Res.

California Public Resources Code.

CARB

California Air Resources Board

CCR

California Code of Regulations

CCS

California Current System

CDFG

California Department of Fish and Game

CEQ

Council on Environmental Quality

CEQA

California Environmental Quality Act

CESA

California Endangered Species Act

CFR

Code of Federal Regulations

cfs

Cubic feet per second

cm/s

centimeters per second

CNEL

community noise equivalent level

CNDDB

California Natural Diversity Data Base

CNPS

California Native Plant Society

CO

carbon monoxide

Corps

Army Corps of Engineers

CSC

California species of special concern

dB

Logarithmic decibel scale

dBA

A-weighted decibel

DPR

Detailed Project Report

EIR

Environmental Impact Report

EIS

Environmental Impact Statement

EPA

US Environmental Protection Agency

ESA

Endangered Species Act

ESHA

Environmentally sensitive habitat area

ESU

Evolutionary Significant Unit

°F

Degrees Fahrenheit

FE

Federally endangered

FEMA

Federal Emergency Management Agency

FSC

federal species of concern

g

Gravity

HKA

Haro, Kasunich and Associates

LCP

Local Coastal Program

m

meter

MBNMS

Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary

MBUAPCD

Monterey Bay Unified Air Pollution Control District

Metro

Santa Cruz Metropolitan Transportation District

mht

Mean high tide

MLLW

Mean Lower Low Water

MLPA

Marine Life Protection Act

MMPA

Marine Mammal Protection Act

MPA

Marine Protected Area

MPCB

Santa Cruz County’s Master Bikeway Plan

MSE

Mechanically Stabilized Earth

msl

Mean Sea Level

NAGPRA

Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act

NDDB

Natural Diversity Data Base

NEPA

National Environmental Policy Act

NGVD

National Geodetic Vertical Datum

NHPA

National Historic Preservation Act

nm

Nautical Mile

NMFS

National Marine Fisheries Service

NOA

Notice of Availability

NOAA

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

NOI

Notice of Intent

NOP

Notice of Preparation

NRHP

National Register of Historic Places

PR

Parks and Recreation

Quad

USGS 7.5 minute quadrangle map

ROD

Recordof Decision

ROI

Region of Influence

SAGE

Sanders Engineering and Associates

SMCA

State Marine Conservation Area

TCP

Traditional Cultural Properties

USC

United States Code

USFWS

US Fish and Wildlife Service

USGS

US Geological Survey

VMT

vehicle miles traveled