BIG SUR (CBSLA) – After being shuttered for nearly three months, a portion of the famous and picturesque Highway 1 that straddles the Pacific coastline near Big Sur in Central California will finally reopen after a mudslide washed it away back in January.
A section of Highway 1 under construction after on April 12, 2021, near Big Sur, Calif. (Getty Images)
Caltrans will reopen the highway at noon Friday, about two months ahead of schedule.
Crews will continue to do drainage and guardrail work after it reopens, however, according to Caltrans spokesman Jim Shivers.
A 150-foot-stretch of the roadway, located about 15 miles south of the town of Big Sur, completely fell away on Jan. 28 during a mudslide caused by a burn scar.
This is far from first time that a landslide has forced the closure of a section of Highway 1 in the Big Sur area, which is a major tourist destination. The region has been ravaged by rainstorms and wildfires.
On Feb. 11, 2021, crews continue to dig out debris from a washed out section of Highway 1 near Big Sur. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
In May of 2017, a massive landslide buried the road under a 40-foot layer of rock and dirt in a quarter-mile stretch in an area called Mud Creek.
Instead of trying to clear the road of the rock and dirt, Caltrans spent $54 million to build on top of it. It remained closed for more than a year, finally reopening in July of 2018.