Excavators and other heavy equipment are busy knocking down berms and moving soil on the south side of Tank Farm Road as part of remediation of the former oil storage site.
The work is being done by oil company Chevron — which owns the property — and is expected to last about three months, project manager Andy Smith said.
The work is part of a long-term remediation of the 332-acre parcel south of Tank Farm Road.
“We are thinking that by the end of October we should be wrapped up out there,” Smith said.
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Removal of the berms will allow the chain-link fence to be moved back from the road about 20 feet, improving the line of sight for motorists on the road and making it easier and safer for Chevron employees to access the site.
The berms being removed were once part of large pits that were used to store crude oil. Storage of crude oil at the site was discontinued in the late 1990s, and the last storage tank was removed in 2000.
Chevron owns property on both the north and south sides of Tank Farm Road. The south side is scheduled to be open space and wildlife habitat, but the north side is slated for several commercial development projects.
Plans for the north side include 27 acres of business park development on the northeastern part of the property and 26 acres of commercial development on both the east and west sides of the site.
Full development of the site is expected to take decades to complete. There are also plans to widen Tank Farm Road to four lanes.
The tank farm was the site of one of San Luis Obispo County’s worst environmental disasters. In 1926, lightning ignited the oil reservoirs, which caused a massive fire that sent burning oil flowing down San Luis Obispo Creek.