Devil's Slide Tunnels Delayed a Year

The construction firm working on the bypass tunnels at Devil's Slide has encountered delays significant enough to push the opening date back one year

By Chris Roberts
|  Thursday, Aug 4, 2011  |  Updated 4:43 PM PDT
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Digging Toward the Light at Devil's Slide

Joe Rosato Jr.

The exterior of San Pedro Mountain with the twin tunnels. Each tunnel will carry a single lane of traffic connecting areas like Pacifica with Half Moon Bay and circumventing the dangerous Devil's Slide.

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Drivers along Highway 1 south of San Francisco have been kept waiting for the bypass tunnels at Devil's Slide to open for years -- and will have to wait a little bit longer.

CalTrans announced that the tunnels -- begun in 2006 with a 2011 completion date -- won't open until next year at the earliest, according to the Contra Costa Times.

It's unclear how much more the project will cost to taxpayers -- or why CalTrans apparently tried to hide the fact from the public, according to the newspaper. No public notices were ever issued, only a quiet update of CalTrans's Web site saying that "late 2012" is when the tunnels might open.

A construction firm based out of Nebraska was paid $272 million for the tunnels and an additional $42 million for a nearby bridge, according to the newspaper. The firm's work has taken longer than originally planned becuse of irregular rock and soil formations at the tunnel location, which has required numerous different types of machinery.

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