By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt
Bernal Heights view photo by zrants
Ronen points out that we can’t trust PG&E to ensure that a 36-year-old high-pressure gas pipe won’t blow up
The City Planning Department will have to do additional research on the chance that a pipeline under Bernal Hill could explode during the construction of two houses, the Board of Supes decided today.
The issue has been back and forth between the board and city planners for years, mostly because the Planning can’t seem to figure out its own rules around environmental review..
The pipeline is one of the few in the city that isn’t buried under a street. The city doesn’t even know at this point how deep the earth above the pipeline is — 24 inches? Or 36 inches? Not clear.
The pipeline has never been fully examined for the sort of potential flaws that destroyed an entire neighborhood in San Bruno.
Justin Horner, a city planning staffer, said that “inadvertent affects that could be caused by negligence are not part of the [environmental review] process.
Which is why the city has argued that a full environmental study isn’t needed… (more)
Thankfully someone is paying attention. The last thing we need is to blow up another neighborhood in our haste to “build more housing.” Residents have been voicing concerns about this pipe for years. Neighbors will be relived to know someone has come to their senses. There is a general problem with an environmental review program that does not take into account the actual natural environment that is existing in determining how the project under review will effect that natural existing situation. A hearing is needed to clarify where and how such matters as seismic conditions and flood plains are taken into account in the building permit process, which is where, we understand this sort of issue is supposedly taken up. Please announce this hearing to the broadest audience possible and please cover this in the media regardless of how many other events occur on that day.