October 2014

La Selva Rail Trestle Construction Underway

crane and crew removing the La Selva Trestle

photo credit: Howard Cohen

As a condition of the purchase agreement between Union Pacific and the Santa Cruz County Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) for acquisition of the Santa Cruz Branch Rail line, funding was designated to upgrade some structures along the 32-mile line. Work on the largest bridge – the La Selva Beach Trestle – is now underway. RTC’s contractor, Stacy and Witbeck, Inc., secured necessary permits, and construction began in late August.

Danny’s Construction, the bridge erection subcontractor completed demolition of the old bridge using cranes that are currently on site.  Crews have begun pouring concrete to form anchors to the existing footings of the bridge. Fabrication of the new bridge was completed in Arizona by Stinger Bridge and Iron.  Pieces of the new bridge are expected to begin arriving in the next couple of weeks for on-location assembly.  Local carpenters, masons and other labor have been hired to work on bridge.

The project is recycling usable materials including the wooden ties used to secure the metal rail.  Completion of the new La Selva Bridge is expected in early 2015. The RTC is the lead agency for the project and will work with neighborhood groups to keep them apprised of conditions. In addition, construction contractors will also perform rehabilitation work on three other bridges.

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