Laguna Beach City news City of Laguna Beach, California


Additional Coast Highway Night Work and Lane Closures Expected Due to Caltrans Culvert Replacement Project

This week, Caltrans started overnight work on a Coast Highway Culvert Replacement Project at Main Beach to replace a deteriorating 100-year old box culvert underneath the highway.

The concrete is crumbling on the 100-year-old culvert located underneath Coast Highway at Main Beach, and is in need of replacement. When it rains, the culvert carries storm water runoff from the Downtown area under Coast Highway to the ocean.

Traffic will again be reduced to one lane in each direction from 8:00 p.m. until 4:30 a.m. tonight and also overnight Friday, March 19 from 10:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m.

Photo courtesy of Pat Gallis
Overnight lane restrictions are now also scheduled next week from March 24-26 from 8:00 p.m. to 6:30 a.m. A FULL ROADWAY CLOSURE is scheduled for Wednesday, March 31 starting at 8:00 p.m. through 6:30 a.m. Thursday morning. A traffic detour will be in place via Broadway, Beach Street, and Ocean Avenue.
Beginning April 1, daytime construction work on the project will begin and last through Memorial Day. Traffic will be reduced to one lane in each direction on Coast Highway at Main Beach for the duration of the project.
Adjacent businesses Le Macaron, Havianas, Beach Trade and Tight Assets WILL BE OPEN during construction!

For questions regarding the project, please contact Caltrans at (657) 328-6000 or email Darcy Birden at darcy.birden@dot.ca.gov

In today's podcast update, Mayor Whalen talks about the Caltrans Coast Highway project at Main Beach, and how to avoid expected traffic congestion in the area.

He also tells us the next steps in the City Manager recruitment process.

Laguna Beach High School and Thurston Middle School students returned to in-person learning Wednesday after a year of virtual learning due to COVID-19! Welcome back to the classroom, students and teachers!

Public Works Department Quickly Repairs Main Beach Boardwalk After Driver Crashes Car

At approximately 7:00 p.m. on Monday, March 1, a driver coming into town on the 133/Broadway jumped the curb toward Main Beach and crashed into the Main Beach boardwalk head-on.
Luckily, no one was seriously injured, but the crash did cause severe damage to the Main Beach Boardwalk. The driver of the vehicle involved in the crash was eventually taken into custody for DUI.
City Public Works Engineering and Maintenance staff worked together to assess the damage, research the boardwalk's original construction plans and identify a cost-effective repair solution in order to reopen the boardwalk safely as soon as possible.
Working as a team, the Public Works Department identified a way to repair the damaged support piles in place, instead of going through a lengthy process of completely removing and replacing the damaged support piles. To do this as fast as possible, special components were custom fabricated by a local welding shop to facilitate the speedy repairs.
As of yesterday, all repairs have been completed and the boardwalk has safely been reopened to the public!

Way to go, Laguna Beach Public Works Department!

New & Upcoming Rounds of CA Small Business COVID-19 Grant

On February 23rd, Governor Newsom signed into law a comprehensive package providing urgent relief for the small businesses of CA. The package provides an additional $2 billion for grants up to $25,000 for small businesses impacted by the pandemic, and allocates $50 million of this total for non-profit cultural institutions.

Round 4 (non-profit cultural institutions only): Open now through Tuesday, March 23rd, 2021
  • Eligible applicants: Only non-profit cultural institutions with any revenue size that meet eligibility criteria
  • Eligible grant award: $5,000 - $25,000
Round 5: Open Thursday, March 25th through Wednesday, March 31st
  • Eligible applicants: current waitlisted small businesses and non-profits not selected in Rounds 1, 2, or 3 and new applicants that meet eligibility criteria
  • Eligible grant award: $5,000 - $25,000
Round 6: Open date to be announced soon
  • Eligible applicants: current waitlisted small businesses and/or non-profits not selected in Rounds 1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 and new applicants that meet eligibility criteria
  • Eligible grant award: $5,000 - $25,000
Go to www.lagunabeachcity.net.BusinessAssistance to find out more information on the City of Laguna Beach Business Assistance Service today!

Welcome New Laguna Beach Restaurant: Poki Tiki!

New Hawaiian Poke Bowl restaurant Poki Tiki is now open at 1100 S. Coast Highway suite 110 in Laguna Beach!

If you haven't tried it, Poke is a Hawaiian dish of diced raw fish commonly served on rice and vegetables.

Poke Tiki now has 8 locations all around Southern California, and is not a franchise- each restaurant is individually family-owned.

Welcome to All Our New Laguna Beach Businesses!

Senior Cuisine Delivered is available in Laguna Beach! Find out more about meal plans and how you can sign up at myagewell.org

In Full Bloom: Laguna Beach Arborist Offers Expertise on DC's Cherry Blossom Season

Laguna Beach City Arborist Matthew Barker

Listen in as new Laguna Beach City Arborist Matthew Barker discusses the history and science behind Washington D.C.'s Cherry Blossom Season, what their significance is and some online festival events you can attend.

Barker was a special guest on NPR's Washington station WAMU 88.5 this week discussing the significance of blossoms in the District. Barker previously served as the City Arborist of Alexandria, VA.

Bioluminescence Spotted in Laguna Beach Due to Red Tide

Rare Phenomenon Causing Neon Blue Waves Spotted Last Weekend

Last weekend, reports surfaced of of bioluminescent waves seen in Laguna Beach and Dana Point, caused by a "red tide." The glowing-wave phenomenon was also seen vibrantly last year in late April and early May.

According to the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, red tide is due to aggregations of a marine plankton species known for its bioluminescent displays.

Each microscopic cell contains some “sunscreen,” giving it a reddish-brown color. On sunny days, the organisms swim toward the surface where they concentrate, resulting in the intensified coloration of the water—and the reason for the term "red tide."

At night, when the phytoplankton are agitated by waves or other movement in the water, they emit a dazzling neon blue glow. Watch as dolphins play in the bioluminescence off the coast of Laguna Beach last year in the video below!

Upcoming Meeting to Discuss Caltrans' Coast Highway Sidewalk Improvement Project

On Tuesday, March 23, at 6:00 p.m. the Planning Commission subcommittee will be hosting another virtual public meeting to discuss proposed Caltrans sidewalk improvements on Coast Highway between Moss Street and Fifth Avenue.

The improvements consist of widening sidewalks, reconstructing driveways, and adding curb ramps along the coast side of the street to meet current accessibility standards.

New sidewalks will be added to create a continuous accessible sidewalk on the coast side of the street between Moss Street and Table Rock Drive.

The subcommittee is anticipated to bring recommendations to the Planning Commission when the project is considered for a Coastal Development Permit in April 2021.

How to Participate in the Meeting via Zoom:

  • When: March 23, 2021 at 6:00 p.m.
  • Dial-in by Phone: 1 669 900 9128
  • Enter the Zoom Webinar ID: 99986722625

Upcoming SCE Utility Work

Next Tuesday, March 23, between 12:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., SCE will be replacing a vault cover at the intersection of Laguna Avenue and Ramona Avenue.

Also on March 23, between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., SCE will be replacing equipment in the Arch Beach Heights neighborhoods on Balboa Avenue and Del Mar Avenue between Oro Street and Balboa Avenue.

On March 25, between 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m., SCE will be replacing a pole and transformer in the Old Top of the World neighborhood by Ann’s Lane and Shady Place. Minor traffic delays anticipated during both instances.

For more information, contact SCE at (800) 655-4555.

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City of Laguna Beach