Tunnels to be named after Lantos

July 3, 2008 2:03:16 PM PDT
Coastside tunnels being constructed on state Highway 1 at Devil's Slide, between Pacifica and Montara, will be named the "Tom Lantos Tunnels at Devil's Slide," state Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco/San Mateo announced today.

The two tunnels are being constructed beneath San Pedro Mountain to provide a dependable highway in an unstable geological area, as well as preserve the natural coastline, according to Yee's office. Each tunnel will be 30-feet wide and 4,200-feet long.

Lantos, who passed away in February from esophageal cancer, obtained $150 million in federal funding to construct the environmentally friendly bypass of the slide, and the other $120 million is being funded by the California Department of Transportation. Yee authored a resolution naming the tunnels after Lantos.

"For over three decades, many San Mateo County residents and civic leaders have worked tirelessly to help protect the pristine coastal land from being paved over and to make the tunnels a reality," Yee said. "Congressman Lantos fought for us from day one and thus it is quite fitting for the tunnels to bear his name."

The tunnels are expected to open in 2011.