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Highway 1 Targeted to Reopen by May 25 as Governor Takes Action to Support Repairs in Topanga Canyon and Other Communities Damaged by Storms

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Governor Newsom announced today that Highway 1, severely damaged by recent storms, is on track to reopen to unrestricted signal-controlled traffic by May 25 — ahead of Memorial Day. Since the March 30 slip-out, crews have been working around-the-clock to stabilize the roadway. The Governor is also taking action that will help secure federal funding for repairs to Highway 1 and other impacted areas around the state, including badly damaged Topanga Canyon Boulevard on State Route 27 in Los Angeles County.

MONTEREY – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the planned opening of Highway 1, located near Big Sur, to unrestricted signal-controlled traffic by May 25. This route is one of California’s most iconic highways and was severely damaged during recent storms which impacted multiple areas of the state.

The Governor is also taking action by signing a state of emergency proclamation, which will help secure an estimated $100 million in federal funding for repairs, including for the badly damaged Topanga Canyon Boulevard in Los Angeles.

Governor Newsom surveyed work being done at Rocky Creek Bridge, the site of the Highway 1 slip-out near Big Sur, earlier today.

WHAT GOVERNOR NEWSOM SAID: “Storms in March caused significant damage to critical parts of our transportation infrastructure – impacting not only traffic for our communities, but also hurting small businesses and workers. The state is working overtime to complete repairs as safely and as quickly as possible and I have signed a state of emergency proclamation, which will help ensure that we receive critical federal funding to help impacted communities bounce back from these devastating storms.”

Multiple communities experienced serious damage to roadways including Topanga Canyon Boulevard on State Route 27, where in early March, the hillside slid onto the highway, bringing down dirt and rocks, including a car-sized boulder. This debris continues to dangerously shift as it blocks both lanes of traffic and the route remains closed between Pacific Coast Highway and the town of Topanga. As a result of this closure, the community of Topanga has faced hours-long detours and a loss of revenue to local businesses.

Additionally, on March 30 in Monterey County, a portion of the southbound lane of Highway 1 near the community of Big Sur fell into the ocean, resulting in limited usage of the remaining roadway. Currently, twice-daily convoys are in use through the slip-out area with some limitations on members of the traveling public. Once the roadway edge is stabilized, the Governor today announced that crews will install a temporary signal and open Highway 1 to unrestricted traffic under alternating one-way traffic control. The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) is striving to complete this work by May 25.

The proclamation signed by the Governor allows for Caltrans to request funding through the Federal Highway Administration’s Emergency Relief Program. Under this program, repairs completed within the first 180 days of an emergency event are eligible for 100 percent federal funding.

The state of emergency is for the following counties: Alameda, Contra Costa, Los Angeles, Marin, Mendocino, Monterey, Napa, Nevada, Plumas, San Bernardino, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, Trinity, and Ventura.

Governor’s Video

Watch a video of the Governor surveying work being done at Rocky Creek bridge.