Coastline development discussions resurface

Where land meets sea in Daly City, there’s pristine coastline with
limited public access, a fact city officials have been looking to change for years.

In 1987, when the city last updated the coastal element of its general plan, staff recommended that access to the coast at Mussel Rock Beach be increased with added parking and new bicycle and hiking trails to the beach.

Twenty years later, officials have not moved on the idea.

Mussel Rock, located at the southwestern end of Daly City, is a cluster of rock formations just off the coast. It’s also the point at which the San Andreas Fault enters the Pacific Ocean, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

In documents for a November public hearing on the general plan, the “longstanding effort to develop the Mussel Rock site as a park and complete the hiking trail along the coastline to Mussel Rock” was listed among city goals for completion.

Senior Planner Mike VanLonkhuysen said the discussion about the coastal element recommendations is a routine requirement for any coastal city making updates to a general plan.

“There is potential for a park in the Mussel Rock area,” he said. “I don’t know that the city has taken a step toward moving on it.”

Mussel Rock also is not listed as one of Daly City’s parks. To the north, Thornton Beach, which is also a state beach, is listed.

William Kelsey, a resident living adjacent to Mussel Rock on Westline Drive, said increasing public access to the park is a good idea.

“A lot of people are here on
weekends to find their way down to the beach,” he said. “People will always find a way to get to the beach, even beyond fences that have been put up.”

The area has ongoing landslides, according to the USGS; it was also the epicenter of the big 1957 earthquake.

A number of homes were removed from the end of the neighborhood for safety concerns, Kelsey said.

The general plan for Daly City is currently being updated. Proposed improvements and guidelines for future projects are expected to be adopted by the end of 2010, VanLonkhuysen said.

akoskey@sfexaminer.com

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