Caltrans announced Monday that it has a target date for reopening Highway 1 at the site of the massive Mud Creek Slide: mid-September.
But that's not exact.
"Caltrans will continuously evaluate the opening date as work progresses," spokeswoman Susana Cruz said in an email. She said the next update would be given in July.
And even after the highway reopens, some intermittent lane closures and roadwork could continue, Cruz said.
Highway 1 has been closed in various places from Ragged Point to Big Sur since December 2016, but a mega-slide on May 20 significantly worsened the condition of the Mud Creek area — millions of cubic yards of material slid down into the sea and created an additional 15 acres of coastline about 9 miles north of the Monterey County line.
Since then, Caltrans has been working to construct a new highway over the top of the slide, burying the old road under tons of dirt.
The question of when the road will reopen through the area has been a complicated one, with weather conditions and geologic hazards from continual slides playing a primary role.
"The slides are still moving several inches per day, so it is still difficult to project a highway opening date," he wrote at the time.
To make sure the new road is stabilized, it will include new safety features such as embankments, berms, rocks and netting, Cruz said in her email.
"This strategy is allowing Caltrans to rebuild the road more quickly and at a lower cost than other alternatives such as structures, a tunnel or major earthwork that puts additional fill into the ocean," she wrote.
Reporters Kathe Tanner and Stephen Provost contributed to this story.