Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

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By David Ganezer
Observer Publisher 

California Incline to Open on September 2, 2016, Says City of Santa Monica

In time for Labor Day, less than 180 days late, and less than $180,000,000 over budget


August 5, 2016

From a City Press Release:

The new California Incline is scheduled to reopen on Friday, September 2, 2016 in time for the Labor Day holiday weekend.

The City originally planned to open the new structure to motorists and pedestrians prior to the Memorial Day weekend; however, the addition of the Idaho Trail Pedestrian Overcrossing to the CA Incline reconstruction project stretched the schedule to late summer. The official opening date is September 2.

The CA Incline, an iconic symbol in Santa Monica, was last renovated in 1930. To meet current seismic standards, the bridge has undergone significant reconstruction and is now a wider, safer bridge with improved bicycle and pedestrian access. The Overcrossing traverses over the Incline providing pedestrian access to the beach from Palisades Park.

In April, I wrote:

California Ramp to Reopen Soon

By David Ganezer, Publisher

Despite criticism from the local pundit class, including yours truly, Caltrans appears to be nearing completion of the California incline, reasonably on time and within budget.

The bridge deck appears to be entirely completed, save the striping. Two years have passed since they closed the bridge, and while the original time estimate was 18 months, they did say at the time that the project could easily require two years for completion.

The bridge was originally built to connect Ocean Avenue’s cliffs with Pacific Coast Highway. It lacked the necessary earthquake safe structures, as required by current Federal standards. Which explains why the US Highway Department is paying for 85% of the project.

The ramp was in fact, built in the 1930’s directly on dirt, without any bridge supporting structures. While it survived several major earthquakes, too many people use it daily to take chances.

Two year project inconvenienced 2 million people but is almost over.

On April 4, 2014, the California Incline was closed for seismic retrofitting and replacement.

On September 21, 2015, officials announced that the project was one third complete, and that the upper section concrete had been completely poured. It took over 100 concrete mixer trucks to provide concrete for the 250 foot long, 52 foot wide bridge.

Concrete on the 750 foot long bridge averages nearly 2 feet deep.

The new bridge includes pedestrian sidewalks, bike lanes and best of all, those travelling North on PCH will be able to turn right and go up the ramp (impossible before).

While the bridge portion is about 750 feet long, the entire length of the roadway is twice that—part of it will continue to be on a dirt ramp.


Reader Comments(2)

JOHNAVATARcom writes:

What! Is that mis-print? Did you mean $180,000? Or you actually meant $180Million!

smlocalgent writes:

Hi David. In your April version of this story, you wrote that two years have passed since they closed the bridge. That is incorrect as the bride was not closed in April of 2014, as you stated. It was closed in April of 2015. Thanks for the story and timely updates!


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