The Curb at Rose and Prospect
July 5, 2016 7:59 PM   Subscribe

As you can see, the corner that sits on the North American plate has slid past the section of the curb that sits on the Pacific plate. When the concrete was poured, the sidewalk was even with the curb!

Unfortunately, this icon of tectonic movement is no more, as the city of Hayward, after fifty years, finally got around to fixing it.
posted by Slap*Happy (28 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
 
“But the plans were on display…”
posted by drezdn at 8:08 PM on July 5, 2016 [8 favorites]


That's amazing. I wonder if there are any other places that show tectonic movement as clearly?
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 8:11 PM on July 5, 2016


my, the earth is full of things. thanks for sharing!
posted by The demon that lives in the air at 8:11 PM on July 5, 2016 [6 favorites]


Oakland Geology is the blog that broke the story. Locals should poke around his neat old school blog. He also has another blog called Oakland Underfoot.
posted by lamp at 8:32 PM on July 5, 2016 [7 favorites]


I wonder if there are any other places that show tectonic movement as clearly?

Dr Hirschfeld's (Professor of Geology at CSU East Bay) blog documents quite a few more.
posted by jamaro at 8:51 PM on July 5, 2016 [6 favorites]




Dr Hirschfeld's (Professor of Geology at CSU East Bay) blog documents quite a few more.

That is a great collection. Thank you!
posted by Miko at 8:59 PM on July 5, 2016


joke's on the city of Hayward, you can't fix a tectonic fault line with a jack hammer and a bit of concrete.
posted by indubitable at 9:50 PM on July 5, 2016 [11 favorites]


I wonder if there are any other places that show tectonic movement as clearly?

California Memorial Stadium lies directly on the same fault (which runs almost directly between the goal posts). Aside from the common sight of entire endzone seating sections being covered and closed, some of the structural supports were splitting in two. Not sure if you can still see that stuff after the renovation, but the entire structure was retrofitted to account for the tendency.
posted by carsonb at 10:08 PM on July 5, 2016 [1 favorite]




Related Previously
posted by zinon at 10:30 PM on July 5, 2016 [1 favorite]


There's a phrase I think I read on Wikipedia's timeline of the far future that's always stuck with me: "on a long enough time scale all matter is liquid".
posted by um at 11:35 PM on July 5, 2016 [11 favorites]


Interesting. And thanks for the additional note pointing out that the curb has been fixed; I might still check it out the next time I'm in Hayward but I'll at least be prepared not to find anything visible.

I've spent a fair bit of time in Hayward (due to family in the area) but wasn't familiar with the cross streets in question, so I looked them up to figure out what part of town they were in. Google Maps link for anyone who's curious.
posted by Nerd of the North at 11:43 PM on July 5, 2016


Ah yes, seismology/geology twitter--some familiar voices from which appear in the article--was collectively mourning the loss the other week. I had never been to the Rose & Prospect curb offset, but I'd heard of it (am not a seismologist, just a social scientist who studies earthquake stuff) and am sorry it's gone before I got the chance.

Never fear, though--you can still check out many other locations on the Hayward fault tour, as well as all the striking ground deformations on Hollister mentioned in ActingTheGoat & zinon's links above. There are also a couple of neat guides for walking tours of all the visible traces of fault creep, retrofitting, etc on and around the Berkeley campus.
posted by karayel at 12:11 AM on July 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


In places, the Hayward fault can be observed as a line of green vegetation when the grass on the hills dries out in the spring. The line of vegetation marks the fault. It remains green because of seeps and springs formed along the fault. Seeps and springs form because the rock in the fault zone has been pulverized by fault movement and altered to clay. This pulverized rock and clay is called fault gouge. Gouge, part way up the hillside, forms an underground dam. Water moving down slope underground, accumulates against the fault gouge and comes to the surface as seeps, springs, and ponds.
So cool.
posted by Mitheral at 12:12 AM on July 6, 2016 [8 favorites]


Also, there was a very cool art project last year, Natural Frequencies, in which the Campanile bells played a composition generated from the real-time data of one of the campus seismometers. I made a trip to the campus (including a very fun visit to the BSL) a week later, and am still not over having missed that.

By the way, if you have a MacBook Pro or an older MacBook (without a solid-state flash drive) you can download a free program to turn your laptop into a seismograph (it uses the sudden motion sensor on the spinning hard drive, which is why it doesn't work on an Air). I recommend jumping on the floor (or bed) for especially cool results.
posted by karayel at 12:25 AM on July 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


> I wonder if there are any other places that show tectonic movement as clearly?

Los Trancos Open Space Preserve has the San Andreas fault running through it:
At another station there is a depiction of how a fence might look after the 1906 earthquake, if it had been built straddling the fault line before the earthquake. The offset in this depiction is 2 or 3 feet, reflecting the amount of fault movement in this area. In contrast, the movement north of the Golden Gate was more like 15-16 feet.
Looks like Point Reyes National Seashore is the place to go to see some of those big shifts.

More shifts in the built environment including the UC Berkeley stadium which is built over the Hayward Fault. The Calaveras Fault is another good one for google image searching for curb displacements. They're everywhere, but Rose & Prospect looks like one of the only ones documented in its progress.
posted by morganw at 4:18 AM on July 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


wow look at that! I feel bad for anyone who built a building over that fault line.
posted by rebent at 5:30 AM on July 6, 2016


finally got around to fixing it

Unless they have some magical new materials and design choices, I am pretty sure the fault will eventually be visible in this location again...
posted by jkaczor at 5:31 AM on July 6, 2016


They should stabilize this fault thing by building a massive structure on it. A nuclear power plant would be just the thing!
posted by Kirth Gerson at 6:04 AM on July 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


Hollister, California, Is Fighting A Constant Battle Against Shifting Ground
I wonder who's going to win...
posted by MtDewd at 6:33 AM on July 6, 2016 [4 favorites]


I wonder if there are any other places that show tectonic movement as clearly?

Tomales Bay is a little large, but might be a place to start.
posted by happyroach at 7:22 AM on July 6, 2016


You'd think the geology department and the art department of some university could collaborate on a monument explicitly designed to demonstrate the phenomenon. It would become a minor tourist attraction and it would be unlikely to be systematically paved over. Maybe get a couple of senior projects out of it.
posted by Western Infidels at 7:24 AM on July 6, 2016 [3 favorites]


On the other hand, maybe the powers that be in the localities involved would prefer to have residents and potential residents forget all about that nasty fault line, and so would never support such a monument.
posted by Western Infidels at 7:28 AM on July 6, 2016


Trump National Golf Course in Southern California sits at the base of a slow moving landslide: Portuguese Bend. Before Trump bought it it was a 17 hole golf course, one of the holes having fallen into the Pacific Ocean.

So, er, that's at least one place you can watch the earth shake stuff loose and feel good about it.
posted by notyou at 7:35 AM on July 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


Hollister, California, Is Fighting A Constant Battle Against Shifting Ground
I wonder who's going to win...


We do fight a lot of battles in this country - especially uphill. Finding peace, making peace, finding coexistence with the fault line - what a better idea.
posted by rebent at 7:49 AM on July 6, 2016 [1 favorite]


> turn your laptop into a seismograph

If you have a smartphone, there's an app for that.
posted by fragmede at 12:37 PM on July 6, 2016 [2 favorites]


ARAMCHEK
posted by thelonius at 4:55 AM on July 7, 2016 [1 favorite]


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