Cliffside La Jolla street reopens after work to stabilize sea cave

Data pix.

SAN DIEGO -- A road along La Jolla Cove that has been closed for repairs since early August reopened to traffic Wednesday.

Coast Boulevard has been closed for more than two months while work crews repaired a weak point under the roadway above a sea cave called Cook's Crack. A team of experts were forced to take emergency actions to stabilize the stretch of road, which is very popular with locals and tourists alike because of its great views. The whole area was shut down to cars and tourists on foot.

According to geologist Pat Abbot, the sea caves that weakened the road form after thousands of years of pounding from the ocean waves.  “That crack gets widened and enlarges until it grows to a cave.  It grows and grows, and then gets so big that the roof falls in," Abbot said.

City engineers feared that the road would collapse,  so on August 9 crews began injecting polymer-based grout below the street into the surrounding areas to permeate the ground and stabilize the soil.

The project involved "the pouring of more than 1,000 cubic yards of a concrete mixture to fill and reinforce the sea cave to insure it would not collapse,” said city spokesman Johnnie Perkins.

The work was completed early, which came as a relief to shop owners, who said the closure of a major road during peak tourist season hurt business.

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