On Monday, March 13, South Coast Water District will begin test borings (“potholing”) on Coast Highway for the Bottleneck Project. Potholing will occur between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., from Aliso Way to 10th Avenue.  This work will take about two weeks and is preparatory work before starting construction/excavation. 

Potholing helps verify locations of existing underground utilities and large obstructions including the old abandoned concrete road in the subsurface of Coast Highway). It’s very important to us that the construction goes as quickly as possible with minimum noise disruptions to the nearby community at night. 

What is potholing?

Potholing is drilling test-boring(s) into the street and subsurface to determine/verify the location, depth, size, or type of underground utility. It includes removing soil and excavates a small pothole (approximately 1-foot wide). Using this method, the contractor can confirm locations of existing utilities. 

Why do you need to do it?

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that all utilities are correctly marked. We want to make sure there are no surprises. By potholing, we can eliminate possible leaks, ruptures, or other hazards. If the contractor finds any mismarked utilities, the design team will adjust the plans to promote smooth, quick and efficient construction activities. 

Aren’t the utilities already marked on maps and other documents?

Over the years, many different utilities and contractors excavated the street to place or replace water, sewer, gas, or electricity cables, etc. Sometimes these utilities are not in the exact locations as depicted in these historical plans; some dating back to the 1960s.  

How will this interfere with traffic on PCH?

The contractor will work Sunday through Thursday from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m., beginning on March 13. It will take up to two weeks. There will be approximately 20 potholes made from 10th Avenue to Aliso Way. They will move small section by small section down the lane closest to the center of the road going north. The contractor will close one lane for the safety of the cars and the workers.

We are potholing to prevent any delays or extra costs that could occur because of incorrect information.

*Date is subject to change. The District will provide updates as they become available.