Construction crews work on the Paseo Del Mar landslide area in San Pedro as they remove earth and haul it away.
Construction crews work on the Paseo Del Mar landslide area in San Pedro as they remove earth and haul it away. (Scott Varley / Staff Photographer)

The Los Angeles City Council on Tuesday earmarked more than $1.4 million to stabilize the San Pedro bluff that began sliding into the ocean a year ago.

The funding was confirmed as part of an overall financial review and status report that the council conducts several times each year.

Crews have begun grading and reshaping the White Point slide area, and the work is set to be finished by the end of December.

The next phase - putting in drainage to direct underground water away from the site and back to the ocean - will begin in December. It is scheduled to be finished by January.

After that, slope anchors will be installed to connect the unstable bluff area to more stable land to the north in the White Point Nature Preserve.

Traffic improvements also are planned.

The anchors and traffic measures are both in the design phase and are scheduled for construction in the first half of 2013.

The measures are designed to help stabilize the area following the Nov.20, 2011, landslide that sent a large section of Paseo del Mar into the ocean below.

A decision on whether or not to rebuild the road - estimated to cost anywhere from $4 million to $62 million - will be made later as a community task force continues its work in evaluating all the options.

Engineers have said no further movement has been detected in the area since the slide nearly a year ago.

The roadway between Weymouth Avenue and Western Avenue began to crack and buckle in the summer of 2011, leading to partial closures several weeks before the highway finally collapsed.

No one was injured and no structures were damaged in the rainy Sunday afternoon landslide.

Officials, using a city-commissioned study for guidance, wanted to make sure some of the stabilization measures were in place before the rain season of 2012-13 begins.

The work now under way - by the John S. Meek Co. in Gardena - includes the removal of debris that fell, littering the area below. Workers also are reshaping and cleaning up the slope to help prevent further sloughing at the landslide's edge.

Next, 30 to 50 dewatering drains will be installed to direct the underground water out of the south-facing cliffs and into the ocean.

High levels of underground water were documented by scientists in the early months following the slide.

The underground slope anchors will go in from March to June, and traffic turnarounds will be put in sometime in the spring.

donna.littlejohn@dailybreeze.com

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