County celebrates Goleta Beach Bridge construction

The public joined Santa Barbara County officials, staff, contractors and community partners to host an official ceremony to celebrate the second anniversary of the Goleta Beach Park Bridge. The County attempted to celebrate the bridge twice after it opened in 2017, but the celebrations were cancelled due to the Thomas Fire and 1/9 Debris Flow.

Public Works wanted to celebrate the second anniversary of the bridge because of the impact it has made in addressing safety issues, enhancing the park visitors' experience, and complementing the surrounding environment. The previous deteriorating bridge was built in the 1960s and no longer conformed to current design standards.

Public Works Director Scott McGolpin said, "We need a structurally adequate bridge out here because when we do our routine maintenance in the Goleta Slough, we bring sediment here. It's also important for us from an emergency perspective as we saw in Montecito both immediately after the debris flow and last winter." The event concluded with a discussion with Public Works Deputy Director Tom Fayram on the sediment placement operations during the winter season.

The new bridge and roadway provide two traffic lanes, shoulders, and a separate sidewalk and bike lane. The bridge has a decorative bike railing, a stained and stamped pedestrian walkway that simulates a boardwalk, and a wood bridge railing.

Attendees included Supervisor Gregg Hart, Assistant County Executive Officer Matt Pontes, Third District Assistant Gina Fischer, and Associate Vice Chancellor Renée Bahl and Government Relations Director Kirsten Deshler from UC Santa Barbara. Supervisor Hart said, "This project provides great access to one of the crown jewels of the County Parks system and is a regional asset. So having great, consistent, safe access to the park is really critical.

MCM Construction, Inc. served as the contractor on the project that began in July 2016. The project cost of $4.86 million and was funded by the Federal Highway Bridge Program (88.5%) and California Toll Credits (11.5%).