Now the city is trying to get federal support. The ground under the apartments on Esplanade Avenue has been crumbling. Residents are being ordered to move out.
Tenants have mixed reactions.
Brandy McDaniel took apart furniture Tuesday so she can rebuild her life elsewhere "I have the ability, financially and otherwise to move myself to a safer location, or just a less stressful location," McDaniel said. The heavy load is a load off her shoulders.
310 Esplanade residents in Pacifica reluctantly moving after apartments yellow tagged for erosion pic.twitter.com/R4Z4CTjUjv— Melanie Woodrow (@MelanieWoodrow) January 26, 2016
It's still quite burdensome for Michelle Mackay. "This is my home," Mackay said. Mackay has lived in this apartment complex for five years -- but says nothing about it feels temporary. "I'm not willing to leave Pacifica. This is my community, my friends, everything is here for me," Mackay said.
It's what's missing that has city inspectors yellow tagging these homes. The new year brought back an old problem, erosion.
"The buildings next door have much further damage and they've been standing just fine for five years," Mackay said.
Pieces of sliding cliff likely crushed the very sign warning tenants.
"It just seems to me like the writing is on the wall," McDaniel said.
A city council approved state of local emergency is the first step to potentially obtaining state and federal funding.
"The rents are too high. We can't move out. We're living paycheck to paycheck," Mackay said.
In the meantime, tenants need to make other arrangements.
"I knew it was a possibility, but the view is worth it. Two and a half years, that's a pretty good run," McDaniel said.
A run that for now at least is over.
The divide here in Pacifica is interesting - some residents who want to move to safety asap, others who refuse to go pic.twitter.com/krXREv81MH— Melanie Woodrow (@MelanieWoodrow) January 26, 2016
Yellow tags on 20 apartments on Pacifica cliff. City inspectors say less cliff makes it too unsafe for residents. pic.twitter.com/wf1ox8ndRN— Matt Keller (@MattKellerABC7) January 26, 2016
Apartment with an ocean view sound nice but how close do you want the ocean? 310 Esplanade in Pacifica yellow tagged pic.twitter.com/yxOCjDEOLo— Matt Keller (@MattKellerABC7) January 26, 2016
Red Cross shelter for residents of 310 Esplanade in Pacifica has been set up at the Pacifica Baptist Church. pic.twitter.com/pdCRe1aDo5— Matt Keller (@MattKellerABC7) January 26, 2016