DOINews: Cosco Busan Seawall Restoration Project, California

Last edited 09/03/2020
O'Shaughnessy seawall, California

Just below Cliff House, O'Shaughnessy Seawall looking north in June 2012. Photo:NPS

The O'Shaughnessy Seawall at Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California is getting a face-lift after nearly a century of holding back the sand and sea at Ocean Beach. Funding for this restoration project comes from the settlement of the 2007 Cosco Busan oil spill which deposited oil on Ocean Beach and closed it for about a week. $336,000 in funding has been allotted to seawall repairs. The O'Shaughnessy Seawall runs between the Great Highway and the beach for almost a mile, the Seawall was built in five sections, beginning in 1916 and ending in 1929.

On November 7, 2007 the Cosco Busan container ship struck one of the support towers for the Bay Bridge puncturing the vessel and spilling over 53,000 gallons of fuel oil into the Bay. The oil impacted the water and shorelines in the central Bay and outer coast resulting in widespread beach closures and interruption of recreational activities.
The National Park Service received a settlement of approximately $9.75 million to compensate for lost recreational uses in San Francisco and Marin counties. Projects to be funded by these settlement funds are intended to compensate the public for the loss of use and enjoyment of beaches, shorelines and other public or natural resources located within NPS park units. NPS park units that were affected by the spill include Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Point Reyes National Seashore and San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park.
The Cosco Busan Trustee Council, comprised of representatives of the Department of the Interior (DOI), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) and the California State Lands Commission (CSLC).
NPS California Seawall 1970's

Just below Cliff House, O'Shaughnessy Seawall in the 1970s looking south. The original design featured curved wavelike walls with bleachers that gave people a place to sit and helped break the incoming surf. Photo:NPS
The shoreline changes along Ocean Beach are dramatic and are a result of natural and human-caused factors. In general, the beach at the northern end of Ocean Beach has been widening and accumulating sand while the beach south of Sloat Boulevard has experienced a loss of beach and is eroding.
Excessive sand at the northern end of Ocean Beach has resulted in sand covering the O'Shaughnessy Seawall and accumulating in the parking lot and the Great Highway. This has buried stairways and impeded access along the esplanade. Currently, the sand is in excess of 13 feet deep at the face of the seawall.
The National Park Service has been working on the concrete structure, repairing cracks and hollowed-out surfaces and replacing rusted rebar. Originally known as the Ocean Beach Promenade and Seawall, work on the seawall will continue through 2016.

Was this page helpful?

Please provide a comment