In late January 2021, a massive downpour caused a section of Highway 1 on California’s Central Coast to collapse into the Pacific Ocean. A period of heavy rain accompanied by a flow of debris, trees, boulders, and mud caused severe damage near Rat Creek, ultimately washing a portion of the highway over the cliffside. This devastated the local economy, impacting residents, tourism, and businesses.

Caltrans prioritized the re-opening of Highway 1 and phased construction accordingly. Phase one involved the expedited rebuilding and opening of the highway. Phase two included the installation of a new 10-foot diameter culvert that would improve drainage beneath Highway 1 into the Pacific Ocean. Caltrans entered into an emergency contract with Papich Construction to rebuild the Highway.

Since the re-opening of Highway 1 was the priority, trenchless installation of the new culvert was selected so that that work could be performed after the highway was already open. Papich Construction contracted with Pacific Boring, Inc. to install the new 10-foot diameter culvert. The project presented many challenges, but just 86-days after the start of construction, cars were driving along the highway. Highway 1 was opened approximately two months ahead of schedule because of the decision to go trenchless and great collaboration among the project partners…

This article was published in Western Regional Trenchless Review. Click to view article below.