Newport Beach City Manager Update: Beach Sand, Balboa Peninsula Fire

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Grace Leung

By Grace Leung, Newport Beach City Manager

A critical and long-awaited project to replenish beach sand along 12 miles of Orange County coastline — including Newport Beach’s — is at last coming to fruition. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers contractors are preparing to start work later this month.

Crews will dredge about 1.2 million cubic yards of sand about two miles off the coast of Surfside and Sunset beaches and deposit it on a stretch of beach south of the Seal Beach naval station.

Over the next few years, through natural wave and tidal flow, the sand will move south to replenish beaches at Huntington, Bolsa Chica and Newport.

Newport Beach will see more immediate results. As part of the project, the Army Corps will use 100,000 cubic yards of accumulated sand from the far West Newport area, near the Santa Ana River, to replenish beaches between 52nd and 36th streets in the coming weeks. Work is scheduled to begin in late November, following recent sand management work by the County of Orange.

Federal sand replenishment projects began in the 1960s to offset the erosion of Orange County beaches caused by construction of federal flood control channels and other projects that disrupted the natural flow of sand and river sediment.

Historically these replenishment projects were done every five to seven years. The last such project was in 2009, however, before federal funding was discontinued. Newport Beach, along with other coastal cities, successfully advocated for the return of federal funding, which was awarded in the current fiscal year budget.

The federal contribution is $15.5 million, with about $7.5 million from the state, local cities and agencies.

The ongoing replenishment of beach sand is a critical issue for Newport Beach. Beach erosion threatens a major part of our economy — ocean recreation and tourism — and increases the risk of flooding during high tides. The City will continue to advocate on behalf of our residents and businesses for a return to more frequent sand replenishment along the Orange County coast.

Fire Guts Balboa Peninsula Retail Store

The Newport Beach Fire Department responded to a structure fire at the 100 block of Main Street on the Balboa Peninsula at about 10 p.m. on Wednesday, November 8. The fire originated in a retail business.

Crews arrived to a large fire increasing rapidly in size and spreading to adjacent structures due to strong winds. The first firefighter unit to arrive quickly extinguished a fire that had spread to the exterior of a neighboring house. This quick action saved the house and likely other adjacent homes.

With the bulk of the fire burning in the rear of the business, the initial fire crews took action to protect the residential units across the alley. The exterior of an adjacent residential home sustained heat damage, but the interior was protected. Residents were able to safely escape.

The retail store and two adjacent restaurants were red tagged (no entry) for safety reasons following inspection by the City’s building department.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Free Document Shredding, E-Waste Disposal and Mulch Giveaway Nov. 18

Newport Beach residents are invited to bring documents for shredding and household electronic waste for disposal on Saturday, November 18 from 8 a.m. to noon at the Public Works Corporation Yard, 592 Superior Ave.

In addition, free mulch will be offered at two locations on November 18: the Corporation Yard and Bonita Canyon Sports Park, 1990 Ford Rd. Please note that the Bonita Canyon site will be for mulch giveaway only (no shredding or e-waste disposal)

Mulch is being provided by OC Waste and Recycling, which creates high-quality mulch from residential organic (green) waste collected in Newport Beach. Mulch pickup is limited to 60 gallons per resident, per vehicle, for residential use only; commercial trailers and vehicles will not be permitted.

The mulch is not bagged, so please come prepared with shovels, as well as bags, tarps or containers. Be prepared to load the mulch into your own trunk or truck bed.

Newport Beach residency will be verified, so please bring identification. No hazardous or medical waste will be accepted.

For more information, please call the City’s Public Works Department at (949) 644-3311.

Winter Class Registration Opens Nov. 16

The City’s Recreation & Senior Services Department encourages you to strengthen your fitness routine and boost your mood with dynamic classes like Jazzercise, Zumba, Yoga and more this winter. We have classes for all ages to help shake up habits and keep you active throughout the new year. Registration for Winter 2024 classes opens Thursday, November 16 at 8 a.m. at www.newportbeachca.gov/register.

Residents will receive a copy of the printed edition of the Newport Navigator in the mail and can view the fully linked digital version online at newportbeachca.gov/recreation the week of registration.

Registration Opens Nov. 16 for Dec. 1 Breakfast with Santa Event

The holidays are almost here! Join us on Friday, December 1 as we welcome Santa to Newport Coast Community Center at our “Breakfast with Santa” event. Enjoy a delicious breakfast, create crafts, play games, take a ride on a trackless train, and smile for a photo with Santa!

Registration is required and begins Thursday, November 16 at 8 a.m. https://newportbeachca.gov/Home/Components/Calendar/Event/73255/18104?backlist=%2Fgovernment%2Fdepartments%2Frecreation-senior-services.

Join Us at Marina Park for Family Fun Night Dec. 15.

Experience a fun family event for all ages with dinner and amazing views of the 112th Newport Beach Christmas Boat Parade on Friday, December 15.  Activities will include crafts, games, and photos with Santa. Tickets are limited, registration begins Thursday, November 16. https://anc.apm.activecommunities.com/cnbreg/activity/search/detail/66543

Be Well Mobile Crisis Response Update

The Be Well mobile crisis response team operates in Newport Beach 12 hours a day, seven days a week to respond to mental and behavioral health crises. The mobile unit is staffed with mental health specialists and works closely with the City’s police and fire departments.

This week, the Be Well team:

  • Transported two people to the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter for intakes.
  • Transported a person to a crisis stabilization unit for treatment.
  • Transported a person to the sobering station at the Be Well campus for treatment.
  • Transported a person to their homeless services provider for assistance.
  • Collaborated with the Newport Beach Fire Department to treat a person after resolving a mental health crisis.
  • Collaborated with the County’s Crisis Assessment Team to place a person into a psychiatric facility for treatment.

To reach Be Well: The mobile crisis team is dispatched through the Newport Beach Police Department. To request service, dial 911 or call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at (949) 644-3717.

This week, the City’s homeless outreach and response teams:

  • Continued to shelter people. Twenty-two people who had been experiencing homelessness in Newport Beach are sheltered in the Costa Mesa Bridge Shelter.
  • Helped a client review housing options.
  • Enrolled two new clients into City Net’s social services.
  • Collaborated with PATH (People Assisting The Homeless) to enroll a client into the housing navigation program.
  • Referred a client to the Yale Navigation Center waiting list.

Click here to view the latest homeless dashboard, which includes key monthly and yearly data on the City’s homeless response: https://www.newportbeachca.gov/trending/community-issues/homelessness/monthly-homeless-count.

Click here for information on the City’s Good Giving program: https://www.newportbeachca.gov/trending/community-issues/homelessness/how-you-can-help.

 

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