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City answers some Village Entrance questions

August 01, 2013|From Laguna Beach City Hall

This question and answer about the Village Entrance project was compiled by city staff and approved by City Manager John Pietig.

Is there contaminated soil at the Village Entrance site and, if so, how would this affect the project?

As with virtually any property that has been used for various non-residential purposes over time, there is a possibility that some remediation may be necessary at the Village Entrance site. As part of the design process and consistent with the certified environmental impact report, the city has retained technical experts to conduct a thorough study of soil conditions at the project site. The consultants will perform a broad spectrum test for volatiles, organics and heavy metals. Results from the analysis should be available in approximately six weeks and will be made available to the public. In the event any contaminants are identified, the appropriate remediation actions would be completed using available funding from the $6.7 million contingency included in the project budget.

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How will the groundwater level affect the design of the Village Entrance parking structure?

Based on the current design concept, the bottom level of the Village Entrance parking structure, while below existing grade, remains above the groundwater level. With that said, the potential for liquefaction is expected. The geotechnical study will examine multiple foundation system alternatives to identify the appropriate system to support the parking structure from bedrock through the existing soils. The project budget anticipates funding for a deep foundation system.

Did the groundwater level in the area impact the below-grade parking at the Community and Susi Q Center on Third Avenue?

With respect to the Community and Susi Q Center, groundwater was encountered at depths of 9 ½ to 17 feet below the surface. To remain above the groundwater, a design was selected that provided only one-level of below-grade parking, as a potential second level of below-grade parking would have breached the groundwater depth and added significantly to the project cost. Additionally, based on the geotechnical analysis, it was determined that liquefaction in the event of a strong earthquake was possible. For these reasons, 36 inch caisson shafts were drilled into competent bedrock to support the building foundations.

Once the Village Entrance project is completed, how much will it cost to operate and maintain the new parking structure, and how will the city pay for it?

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