Newly-Widened Sepulveda Bridge Gets Official UnveilingMar 21, 2023 08:29AM ● By Jeanne Fratello
It's official: After more than two years of construction, the Sepulveda bridge-widening project is complete.
The $8.8 million project, which began in fall 2020, was a collaborative effort with the city of Manhattan Beach, Caltrans, and Metro.
It now features six lanes of traffic along Sepulveda Blvd. between Rosecrans Ave. and 33rd St.. The bridge, built in 1930, also got seismic retrofits and new paving and lighting along the path that connects Veterans Parkway to the Manhattan Village Mall.
On top of the bridge, that stretch of road is a significant artery for commuters traveling through Manhattan Beach. Underneath the bridge, the pathway is well-used by pedestrians who walk under the bridge to get to and from the East and West sides of the city.
"The Sepulveda Bridge Widening Project will help ease congestion, improve pedestrian safety, and create additional mobility benefits with direct access to the beach from Manhattan Village Mall via Veterans Parkway," said John Cruikshank, chair of the South Bay Cities Council of Governments and incoming mayor of Rancho Palos Verdes, at the event.
"This is the type of project that we love, because we work together as local jurisdictions," added Cruikshank, who is a civil engineer by trade. "And even though I'm from Rancho Palos Verdes, I grew up in El Segundo and I understand how important Pacific Coast Highway is to regional transportation."
The project involved widening the east side of the bridge to provide one additional northbound lane on Sepulveda Blvd., and creating a shoulder varying from two to eight feet on the east side of the bridge along with six-foot-wide sidewalks. The bridge also got upgraded railings in both northbound and southbound directions.
(The mayor and the city's Public Works/Engineering team pose under the bridge)
"[The bridge] got updated a little bit in the 70s, but it was pretty much an eyesore, and seismically unfit underneath," said Manhattan Beach Mayor Steve Napolitano. "It needed some upgrades - but this isn't just an upgrade; this is a huge improvement over what was there."
(City Engineer Katie Doherty gets a souvenir "strip" of the ribbon with help from Mayor Pro Tem Richard Montgomery and Communications and Civic Engagement Manager Jessica Vincent.)
Funding for the project was provided by the South Bay Measure R Highway Program of the South Bay Council of Governments (partially funded with the Measure R sales tax approved by L.A. County voters in 2008); the federal SAFETEA-LU (Safe Accountable Flexible Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users); Proposition C; and Metro's 2009 Call for Projects, a competitive grant program for transportation funds.
Napolitano credited former mayors Jim Aldinger and Wayne Powell for going out and seeking the "very competitive" transportation grant money to make the project possible.