San Diego LOSSAN Rail Realignment (SDLRR) Project – Geotechnical and Geological Investigation


SCH Number
Public Agency
San Diego Association of Governments
Document Title
San Diego LOSSAN Rail Realignment (SDLRR) Project – Geotechnical and Geological Investigation
Document Type
NOE - Notice of Exemption
Document Description
The San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) is evaluating the realignment of a segment of the Los Angeles San Diego San Luis Obispo (LOSSAN) Rail Corridor from its existing location along the Del Mar Bluffs to a new location between, approximately, Solana Beach and Sorrento Valley Station. SANDAG is in the process of evaluating the feasibility of conceptual tunnel alignments and must undertake geotechnical analysis to inform preliminary project engineering.

Contact Information

Keith Greer
Agency Name
Job Title
Deputy Director
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency / Project Applicant / Parties Undertaking Project


Del Mar, San Diego, Solana Beach
San Diego
State Highways
Hwy 101, SR 56, I-5, I-805
LOSSAN corridor (San Diego)
Winston School, Del Mar Heights School, Del Mar Hills Academy
Pacific Ocean, San Dieguito Lagoon, Los Penasquitos Lagoon
Other Location Info
Testing locations are located within the following areas: existing railroad right of way (between Solana Beach Station at mile post 241.8 and Sorrento Valley Station at mile post 249.25), the City of Del Mar, the City of San Diego, and State of California property.

Notice of Exemption

Exempt Status
Statutory Exemption
Type, Section or Code
PRC, sections 21080(b)(1), 21102; CCR, title 14 (CEQA Guidelines), section 15262
Reasons for Exemption
SANDAG proposes to conduct geotechnical and geological investigations to support preliminary design and environmental analysis. CEQA does not apply to ministerial governmental approvals (Public Resources Code, section 21080(b)(1)) or feasibility and planning studies for possible future actions which the agency has not approved, adopted, or funded.

Exempt Status
Categorical Exemption
Type, Section or Code
CEQA Guidelines Sections 15304 (c) and (f) (Class 4),15306 (Class 6), and 15303 (Class 3)
Reasons for Exemption
Activities such as minor alterations to land, including but not limited to minor trenching and backfilling, filling of earth into excavated lands, data collection that does not result in a serious or major disturbance to an environmental resource, and the placement or construction or small structures or equipment are categorically exempt from CEQA review pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Sections 15304 (c) and (f) (Class 4),15306 (Class 6), and 15303 (Class 3). The testing activities qualify for a Class 4 Categorical Exemption from CEQA because they involves minor alterations in land where the surface would be restored and filled with material compatible with the natural features of the site. The activities involve geotechnical and geological investigations, which consist of mud rotary and diamond core borings. This work qualifies for this exemption because all borings would be backfilled in accordance with the County of San Diego Department of Environmental Health guidelines using a cement-bentonite slurry and the surface would be capped to match the existing ground surface. The activities qualify for a Class 6 Categorial Exemption from CEQA because project activities include rotary drilling and rock coring, on-site field testing, and geotechnical laboratory testing which would not result in a serious or major disturbance to an environmental resource. To inform subsurface hydrogeology, piezometers, which are wells that measure water table surface, would be installed flush with the ground surface. The top well box would be 12 inches in diameter with a borehole diameter of 4 to 8 inches. The depth of the piezometers would be determined during drilling. This equipment qualifies for a Class 3 exemption because it would involve minor modifications to surface and subsurface conditions.
County Clerk
San Diego


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