Crystal Springs Bridge Construction
Skyline Boulevard spanning the Crystal Springs dam is set to reopen on Friday January 11th after a massive reconstruction replacement project that started in 2003. Originally completed in 1888 the concrete gravity dam was one of the first constructed in the western United States.
The new dam measures about 190 meters long, 143 meters high, and 15 meters wide. This doubled the width of the main spillway, and increased the dam hight by about two meters allowing for more water storage—nearly 7.5 million cubic meters.
Crystal Springs Reservoir Area
The project was divided into multiple steps. The first was the dam construction which was completed in 2012. The bridge construction was finished in October of 2018. PG&E worked in parallel with the bridge, and was accomplished by August of 2018. Site security, and the Gap Trail project wrapped up in early January of 2019. Construction costs are estimated to be around $50 million.
While the dam lies only about 100 meters from the San Andreas Fault it has survived two major earth quakes without damage. The first being the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, and the second the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake. Still it was determined that for the safety of the Crystal Springs watershed a replacement dam was required.
Crystal Springs Dam Construction
With the opening of this section of Highway 35 there is now a straight forward non-freeway path connecting the peninsula through this section of the valley. Travel for motor-driven cycles and mopeds between the north and sound bay can once again enjoy a more direct and scenic route.
During the Crystal Springs closure extensive, and confusing detours were required. While inconvenient this did provide for some interesting, and fun ride routes.