Tsunami History at the Princeton Harbor


By on Tue, November 17, 2009

My concern regarding the proposed Big Wave project, as a nearby neighbor, is three-fold.

1.) There was very little notice given. Most Coastside residents haven’t even heard about it, nor do the have any concept of the huge scale it will impose on the area.

2.) The Traffic study in the Big Wave Draft Environmental Report makes no mention of the HUGE impact the commute congestion will cause for the existing residents of the Harbor area (dwellers and businesses) at the only traffic signal at HWY One and Capistrano Rd. or on the residential owners in the Pillar Ridge community or the Seal Cove community who habitually use the only other intersection for ingress or egress, that is the intersection of Hwy One and Cypress. This intersection has no night-time illumination, no traffic signal, and is often backed up on sunny beach days when the person at the front of the line wishes to turn left, causing a delay for everyone else behind them. At the very minimum, the developer should be forced, as KN Properties was as developer for Harbor Village, to improve the intersection with extra turn-out lanes or a traffic signal needs to be installed.

3.)The willingness of the parents and the developer to place their own children in harm’s way by building a residential community of developmentally disabled adults in an known Earthquake and Tsunami zone. The San Gregorio Fault runs through the project and the tsunami evacuation route runs in front of it. It’s not as if there has never been a Tsunami in the Princeton area before. Look back as recently as 1946 when the water from the "tidal wave" came inland a quarter mile. (And that was a small one.) It may be that, were we to have another one, many of the cars parked in the proposed 640 space parking lot could be sucked out onto Airport Street as the wave recedes, blocking the tsunami evacuation route from the adjoining neighborhoods (Princeton, Pillar Ridge and Seal Cove) with massive debris brought in by the wave, causing obstacles to prevent emergency vehicles from getting to the rescue sites.

The word tsunami in Japanese means "harbor wave", and it is ominously prophetic that the wellness center project is to be called BIG WAVE.  I’m concerned for the residents. It’s a laudable project for special needs people… just not in that location for heaven’s sake.