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Road issues could extend Hearst Castle closure

Hearst Castle without any visitors
Posted at 9:03 PM, Apr 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-11 02:35:49-04

Hearst Castle in San Simeon could remain closed longer.

The possible extended closure is not due to COVID-19 restrictions but rather, road damage caused by January’s heavy rainfall.

Dan Falat, the Superintendent of the San Luis Obispo Coast District of State Parks, said there was a report commissioned for about $32,000 to investigate underground damage in the roads leading up to the pergola and gates of Hearst Castle.

The roads themselves are part of the monument’s historical legacy, having been designed by the castle’s architect, Julia Morgan.

Falat says the report could take up to four to six months to complete and then more time could be added on for whatever repairs there may be before the monument could reopen.

According to State Parks, the damage is likely in the underground drainage system, called culverts.

Buses are the only way for visitors to view the castle, causing potentially even more issues for the road.

“We’re taking the buses off the road because we don’t want that continual pressure," Falat explained.

The castle is currently not allowed to operate due to COVID-19 restrictions on indoor tours and the necessary transportation of tour groups.