Hillside collapses at Pinole retirement community property

Heavy rains have washed away part of a hillside behind a retirement community in the East Bay causing a massive collapse that has crept up to the edge of the residential building and caused the collapse of a road and parking lot

The Bay Park Retirement community is on the 2600 block of Appian Way and nearby homeowners stopped by to see the damage, concerned about the danger of more erosion.

"I just walked up here to see how it might affect my house. I just live a couple blocks away," said Craig Woods, who lives nearby..

One resident Stephen Harris took photos showing the concrete road beginning to buckle and crack three weeks earlier, before the pavement finally collapsed.

  houses some 80 seniors, according to the

James Anderson of El Cerrito came to see the damage for himself. His father is one of the eighty or so residents of the retirement community. Anderson says about 50 people showed up for an hour-long meeting Tuesday with the staff. They were told the main residential building is safe for now.

"I'm relieved we don't have to move my dad again. He doesn't like moving," said Anderson.

The Bay Park retirement community is one of 306 centers operated nationwide by the Holiday Retirement group. Spokesman Brian Fawkes says they're working to address the problem.

"We're working with the City of Pinole's building department and have hired on our own structural and geological engineers to assess the situation and determine how we can get this resolved quickly," said Fawkes.

As a precaution, Bay Park has closed the back of the structure.

"We have closed our activity and exercise rooms and a portion of our dining room which is located at the back of the building because we want to make sure residents are not in there in case there is any movement," said Fawkes.

More rain is in the forecast later in the week, so engineers will be monitoring the hillside. If the hillside continues to collapse, the Bay Park staff have created an evacuation plan and will immediately relocate residents to other facilities or hotels.