A marginal amount of rain in recent months hasn’t stopped the land from moving in Rancho Palos Verdes — rather, it’s still accelerating.

That was the assessment of city geologist Mike Phipps, who said during this week’s City Council meeting, at which elected officials extended RPV’s local emergency declaration again, this time to Aug. 31. The council initially declared a local emergency related to the land movement on Oct. 3 and has repeatedly extended it since then.

Some areas of the city, Phipps said, are moving as much as 13 inches per week. Still, Phipps, who based the latest assessment on data from May and June, said the acceleration has slowed compared to March and April.

But the decrease has not been significant enough to prevent further damage, he said.

“There’s a considerable area of ​​the landslide that’s moving about a foot per week right now,” Phipps said, “which is making everything difficult, maintaining roads, people’s houses are really starting to have issues throughout the community up there.

“I’ve heard mentioned that there’s over 100 homes that are suffering some kind of damage,” he added, “and we really still haven’t been able to see too many of those, because people don’t want us on their properties.”

Covering 240 acres, the massive Portuguese Bend Landslide Complex encompasses smaller areas such as Abalone Cove, Portuguese Bend, Beach Club and Klondike Canyon.

The Abalone Cove landslide area is moving seven to 11 inches a week, the Portuguese Bend landslide area is moving nine to 12 inches a week, and the Klondike Canyon landslide area is moving “anywhere from less than an inch a week on the eastern boundary to about seven inches a week on the western boundary,” Phipps said.

With no end in sight to the shifting, the City Council has been implementing ways to halt the unprecedented land movement that has been exacerbated by heavy rainfall the past two winters.

Land movement in the city, so far, has caused the dismantling of the historic Wayfarers Chapel in the hopes of saving it for rebuilding elsewhere and the perpetual upkeep of RPV’s busiest street — Palos Verdes Drive South.

The council previously voted to prohibit two-wheeled vehicles from traveling on Palos Verdes Drive South.

Repairs are being done on the two-lane road, which sees around 16,000 travelers daily, said Public Works Director Ramzi Awwad. The city is also working with the Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts on sewer lines adjacent to the road.

City staffers are working with a consultant, Awwad said, to determine the best way to regrade and stabilize an area of ​​PV Drive South known as the “ski jump,” between Narcissa and Peppertree drives.

One option is to shut down PV Drive South completely for a period of time, Awwad said. Crews would work around the clock, limiting noise and activity to the overnight hours. Awwad called this option a way “to get it done more quickly with a more painful, but shorter duration.”

Another option, he said, is to perform the work one lane at a time. But, Awwad said, he’s not sure that’s even possible.

An ongoing impact of the land movement is also evident in nine miles of trail closures in the landslide area.

That has increased another mile since last month, said Katie Lozano, an administrative analyst for the city’s Department of Recreation, Parks and Open Space.

There is no longer access to the Sacred Cove area of ​​Abalone Cove Reserve, Lozano said.

“Staff witnessed a lot of what looks like stress fractures and slippage of the trail,” she said, “so this area was closed as of last Friday (June 28).”

Residents of the Abalone Cove Landslide Abatement District and the Klondike Canyon Landslide Abatement District — Geologic Hazard Abatement Districts that work independently of the city — will receive some financial aid, which the council also approved at its Tuesday, July 2, meeting.

ACLAD will receive a $1.6 million loan and KCLAD will receive $1.9 million. Both loans have a 12-year term at a 2.5% interest rate.

Other residents whose homes could potentially be threatened by the land movement could possibly receive aid from the city.

“It’s a complete emergency,” Councilmember Eric Alegria, “and it’s now jeopardizing families, homes and structures.”

The council directed staffers to look into amending city codes to allow temporary housing, including the use of cargo containers or manufactured homes.

“We can go back and explore what techniques, what options, what opportunities there are to salvage some of the structures,” City Manager Ara Mihranian said, “as well as find temporary shelter or temporary means to support residents staying in their homes.”

Extending the city’s local emergency ordinance, Mihranian said, ensures leadership can make code amendments to make those sort of things happen.