Three large apartment complexes in Pacifica had been empty, uninhabitable, and teetering over the edge of the coastline for years — a disaster waiting to happen in the event of an earthquake or continued heavy rains. But the last of those three buildings was finally demolished on Monday, January 30, eliminating an enormous health hazard and producing some very entertaining demolition for the locals to watch.
The mess you see in the photo above is not just any mess, it is a mess that sits about 100 feet above the ocean on the Pacifica coastline with the ground beneath it constantly eroding. Adding to public safety risk, the former 20-unit apartment complex at 310 Esplanade Avenue was packed with asbestos and other hazardous materials that city official were eager to keep out of the ocean.
“The vacant building at 310 Esplanade poses a significant risk to public health and safety, and the City is stepping in to demolish the structure,” Pacifica City Manager Lorie Tinfow said in a release. “Recent storms and ongoing deteriorating conditions on the adjacent bluffs present a clear danger to the public. By demolishing the structure now, we will prevent further complications and expense associated with the clean-up.”
Some aerial shots of the apartment complex dangling over a cliff underscore the clear public safety risk posed by the building. The landlord of both this building and the adjacent 320 Esplanade Avenue, which was demolished last March, had declared bankruptcy and abandoned the buildings. A third building at 330 Esplanade was razed last February, with the landlord paying for costs.
While the removal of these eyesores is a relief to the community, it cannot be denied that their demolition is pretty entertaining in video format. The demolition of 320 Esplanade Avenue was captured in video by local photojournalist John Green.
While the physical demolition of the last building at 310 Esplanade was completed in one day, the clearing of debris is expected to continue through Thursday, February 2.