Santa Cruz Coast: Now and Then…

It’s another “Arcadia” book. They publish the most interesting books these days….Here’s a book about arches that John Vonderlin wrote about in an earlier post.

Here’s the press release from UC Santa Cruz about the new book, San Mateo Coast: Now and Then by authors Gary Griggs and Deepikta Shrestha Ross.
September 19, 2006

Contact: Tim Stephens (831) 459-2495; [email protected]

New book looks at Santa Cruz coast ‘then and now’

A new book by Gary Griggs, professor of Earth and planetary sciences at UC Santa Cruz, and local architect Deepika Shrestha Ross offers a unique look at the Santa Cruz coastline. The book juxtaposes historic photographs with photographs taken from the same locations today, showing how the coastline has evolved and changed, sometimes dramatically, over the past century.


The book, Then and Now: Santa Cruz Coast (Arcadia Publishing, 2006), offers a pictorial history of the Santa Cruz coast, featuring many local landmarks and notable landforms along the coast. The authors worked with historians and curators of various collections of historical photographs to gather old images of the coast. The book includes photos from private collections as well as from local museums and libraries.

The next step was to try to locate where the older photographs were taken from so that the authors could take current photographs from the same location.

“As much as possible we tried to reoccupy the site where the photographer had stood to take the earlier photograph. This was sometimes challenging, but it was also fun,” Griggs said.

The striking images and accompanying text provide a fascinating perspective on the history of the Santa Cruz area. And the changes documented in the book provide clear evidence of ongoing erosion of the coastline and the hazards of coastal construction.

“If history tells us anything about the coast, it is that anything built on the shoreline should be seen as temporary,” Griggs said.

Griggs has lived on the central California coast for 38 years. An expert on coastal geology and geologic hazards, he directs the Institute of Marine Sciences at UCSC.

Coauthor Deepika Shrestha Ross is an architect who currently lives in Santa Cruz. Born in Katmandu, Nepal, she earned a degree in architecture from Cornell University and has worked in Washington, D.C., London, New York, and San Francisco.


Note to reporters: You may contact Griggs at (831) 459-5006 or [email protected].

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