June 9, 2018 – On Friday, June 8th, the State’s Budget Conference Committee unanimously voted to include the additional 2.8million in funding needed to restore the historic Bridgeport Covered Bridge as planned in the late summer. County of Nevada, Save Our Bridge Committee, and community stakeholders extend appreciation to Assemblymember Bloom, Assemblymember Dahle, Assemblymember Ting, Senator Nielsen, Senator Gaines,and Susan Chan, committee staff to Assembly Budget Committee, for their support of the Bridgeport Bridge Restoration Project.
On Monday, May 21st, Nevada County was informed that a funding shortfall for the Bridgeport Bridge Restoration Project emerged which, if left unfunded, would delay the project for at least one year and likely drive costs up further threatening the project. In collaboration with the Save Our Bridge Campaign Committee and many other community advocates, County Supervisors sent letters to California State Assembly Committee on Budget members to advocate for the funding needed to keep the project on schedule, and received news that the Budget Conference Committee voted in favor of the additional funding early this morning. The additional funds are now earmarked upon approval of the State budget.
Upon final approval of the additional funding in the State’s budget, the California Department of Parks and Recreation will be able to continue to select a bid with construction starting as early as August 2018. The reconstruction will include raising the Bridge eighteen inches to allow for higher river levels, with hidden new structural elements to ensure the future integrity of the Bridge. The Project also includes replacement of some of the existing interior support structures, roof, wall and other failing structural elements as needed, all while preserving the Bridge’s historic nature.
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District 4 Supervisor Hank Weston, who has been an advocate for the project since discussions began over six years ago, said, “We are very grateful to the State’s Budget Conference Committee for their approval of the budget in order to continue with the restoration of the historic Bridgeport Covered Bridge. The South Yuba River Park Association and Save Our Bridge Campaign Committee, along with Nevada County officials and many local agencies and non-profits, have been advocating for the restoration of the Bridgeport Bridge for almost seven years. We’d like to thank the South Yuba River Park Association, the Save Our Bridge Committee, and all others involved for passionately advocating once again for this project that is so important to the historic integrity and economy of Nevada County.”
Dave Anderson with the Save Our Bridge Committee added, “The Save Our Bridge committee is thrilled with the provision of the additional funding needed for the restoration of our precious bridge. We wish to express our appreciation to the community, community organizations, and our county and city leaders that have been so instrumental in achieving this critical milestone. We are looking forward to the day that we can again walk across this historic treasure.”
Upon completion of the construction project, the hundreds of thousands of annual visitors to the Park will be able to cross the Bridgeport Bridge once again since it was closed to foot traffic in 2011.