Trouble getting railing sections for the so-called Bridge to the Beach has delayed its opening until Sept. 16.
The bridge originally was set to open Sept. 2. It will allow pedestrian access to a 2.5-mile stretch of previously inaccessible Puget Sound waterfront at the Chambers Creek properties in University Place.
Contractors are awaiting the final pieces of cable railing sections for the bridge before it can open, according to a news release issued by Pierce County this morning.
The bridge, officially called the North Dock Overpass, is being built at a cost of $3.8 million. About $3.15 million comes from state grants; $650,000 from the Pierce County sewer utility.
It crosses the railroad tracks, allowing public access to the beach from the Central Meadow area at the Chambers Creek recreation area.
The opening ceremony now is set for 3 p.m. Sept. 16, the news release said.
Here’s a copy of it:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Aug. 20, 2010
Bridge to the Beach opening moved to Sept. 16
The opening of the pedestrian overpass at Chambers Creek Properties has been moved to Sept. 16 due to a construction delay.
The “Bridge to the Beach” opening was originally planned for Sept. 2. But delays with the delivery of custom cable railing sections prompted the need to move the opening date.
Pease and Sons, the contractor on the project, is ready to install the final pieces as soon as they arrive. “We are disappointed that the final pieces of safety railing are delaying the completion of the project,” said Bryan Hillemann, the project manager from Pease and Sons. “We are doing everything in our power to expedite delivery of the railing.”
“We cannot open a pedestrian bridge that is not secure,” said Brian Ziegler, Public Works and Utilities director. “We are coordinating very closely with the contractor to make sure we can open as soon as possible.”
The custom cable railing system is designed to be unobtrusive and provide durability and ease of maintenance in the marine environment. Unlike other railing options, the cable railing system will provide the bridge with a sleek appearance without distracting from the amazing views of Puget Sound, the Olympic Mountains, Chambers Bay Golf Course and the meadows and trails of the Chambers Creek Properties.
The opening ceremony, which is open to the public, will take place on Sept. 16 at 3 p.m. After brief presentations by key officials, the 900-foot overpass will open to allow access to two miles of Puget Sound shoreline that has been off limits for a century due to mining operations.