|Summary||Coastal Commission staff recommended approval of shoreline armoring in a joint application for three homes in Solana Beach. The homes at 235 and 241 Pacific Avenue were constructed prior to enactment of the Coastal Act. Thus, the residences are considered “existing” for purposes of requiring protection under Section 30235 of the Coastal Act. However, the northernmost home (245 Pacific Avenue) was approved by the Commission in 1996 and is not an existing structure for purposes of Section 30235 of the Coastal Act because it was originally permitted and built after 1976, thereby postdating the enactment of the Coastal Act. The owners of the newer constructed home knowingly accepted the risk of building their home on the bluff top, closer to the edge than recommended, with the understanding that they would not be legally entitled to protective structures on the bluff front. The Commission amended the staff recommendation, holding that only the two pre-coastal act homes were legally entitled to a seawall. One continuous seawall for all three properties was not approved.|
|Outcome Description||After extensive discussion, the Commission amended the staff recommendation, holding that only the two pre-coastal act homes were legally entitled to a seawall. The third home was built after the Coastal Act had been adopted and therefore, the homeowners were not entitled to protective devices.|
|Why You Should Care||While these properties cover only small pieces of the coast, they have the potential to set major precedent for the future. If there were no seawall in front of 245 Pacific, and one of the neighboring homes were redeveloped and the seawall was removed, a little pocket beach could be created as the bluffs would be allowed to retreat naturally - a glimmer of hope in an otherwise drowning beach. We cannot stand silent as our beaches are dying a death by a thousand cuts.|
|Staff Recommendation||Approval with conditions|
|Opposition to Project||Surfrider Foundation|
|Coastal Act Policies||30235|
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