Shoring Up San Francisco Against Climate Change

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is planning or has completed a trio of projects on tap in different parts of the city in a bid to deal with issues that are worsening as the climate changes in The Bay Area. These projects will give a boost to neighborhoods where residents have been grappling with erosion and flooding. Here’s what’s going on:

Ocean Beach erosion: Rising sea levels and more intense storms continue to erode the southern part of Ocean Beach, messing with water and wastewater infrastructure. In response, The Ocean Beach Climate Change Adaptation Project will create public open space, build a mile of new seaside trail and protect water and wastewater infrastructure. Traffic will reroute from the Great Highway between Sloat and Skyline away from the narrowest part of the beach. This will convert the existing stretch of roadway into a multi-use public trail with ocean views. The project will start in 2025 and will last for four years. You can find all the details here.

West Portal stormwater upgrades: The area by Wawona and Vicente is known for flooding in heavy rains, and those are happening more frequently these days. The good news is that PUC crews replaced aging water infrastructure there, and improved capacity for capturing and diverting street runoff.

Mission sewer upgrade: Another area that floods in heavy rain is along Folsom, particularly at 17th Street in the Mission. The PUC began upgrading and modernizing the aging sewer system there and is almost done with its first phase. Next up later this year is construction of large underground sewer storage boxes and tunnels to transport stormwater away from the area. They’re expecting to wrap up work in mid-2027. Of course, there’s no guarantee this will stop flooding. But it will definitely help.

All information courtesy of the SFPUC.


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