PHOTOS: SJC Gas Station Is Going, Going ...

The Chevron on the west side of the Ortega interchange is almost gone.

The former Chevron station on Ortega Highway west of the I-5 Freeway is on its last legs.

Caltrans seized the property and several others on both sides of the freeway so it can expand the interchange. The Jack in the Box across the street has already come down.

Previously, a Caltrans official said Chevron likes to take care of its own demolitions. There is another Chevron station on the east side of the freeway which will also be dismantled.

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Clint Worthington February 05, 2013 at 08:55 PM
Now the question is, who is going to foot the bill for the fuel leak? Is it Chevron or is it the taxpayers as we now own the property? At last check the fuel leak plume was going to presumably follow the El Horno creek channel which is between the Chevron station and the south bound on ramp. The creek then goes under the freeway to the other side and exits to San Juan Creek at Paseo Tirador. Without drilling test holes in the freeway, the exact location of where the fuel leak plume is traveling is unknown. You may have seen the drilling rigs in the Denaults parking lot and Ralphs parking lot trying to locate the fuel plume. Paseo Tirador is also the exact location where the second largest city water well is located.
rob h February 06, 2013 at 02:51 PM
Clint, do you think there's a question on who will pay? Even if Chevron pays for it we the tax payers will pay for it anyway with increased gas prices. My wife and I own seperate buisnesses and if we ran our businesses like the gas companies do, we would not have businesses.
Clint Worthington February 07, 2013 at 04:40 PM
Rob, I agree with you on all your points 100 percent. It is just too easy that Chevron is able to walk away from this cleanup of the gasoline spill and subsequent underground gasoline plume . My additional concern is the safety of the workers on this overpass project as they drill holes for the concrete supports. We know that the gasoline plume at the remaining Chevron station 2,800 gallon leak is at the 130 foot depth. When they start drilling next to this station and on top of the station for the concrete supports for the bridge , I am afraid that they are going to have a big surprise which may delay the project further when they find gasoline from the spill underground and will be required to clean it up. I hope I am wrong.
Kelley February 07, 2013 at 05:53 PM
I was under the impression that the gas leak was from the Chevron that's at the corner of Del Obispo and Camino Capistrano? Not from the one by the freeway.
Clint Worthington February 07, 2013 at 06:10 PM
Kelly, you are correct. There were two leaks from that station that leaked a total of 2,800 gallons. It happened when they were dipping the tanks with the long metal pole to measure the amount of gasoline in the tanks. The metal pole punctured the bottom of the tank both times, leaking the gasoline into our water supply. This resulted in a settlement with Chevron over the MtBE problem. Now the gasoline tanks are double walled to help prevent the leaks. The station at Del Obispo and Ortega Highway also leaked gasoline. I did ask Gretchen Strocheim who owns the property where the Mission Inn was, if she had seen any evidence of the gasoline plume on her property. She said no. If you look at the Mission Inn property, it is quite a bit below grade from that Chevron station. According to City Council agenda it appears that digging will begin soon to bring a larger volume water pipe to the Mission Inn sight for the hotel. At that time, I am afraid if they are not careful or not aware of it, they will dig up the gasoline plume, delaying the construction further.


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