Community Breaks Ground on Red Car Bridge


ATWATER VILLAGE - Los Angeles City Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell and residents from Atwater Village and Silver Lake rang a vintage trolley bell to signal the start of construction on a new project that will bridge the two communities along the Los Angeles River.

The new pedestrian-friendly bridge, which will eventually span the waterway, will utilize the existing Red Car Trolley piers next to the Glendale-Hyperion Complex of Bridges. The completed bridge will provide safe, non-motorized access to our river environment while connecting the communities of Silver Lake and Atwater Village.

“This new amenity has been sixteen years in the making,” said Councilmember O’Farrell. “My number one transportation priority is pedestrian safety, and this project will allow more people to safely cross the Los Angeles River. I want to thank the Bureau of Engineering, the Department of Cultural Affairs, and local residents for their work on this project.”

This completed bridge will be critical during the seismic retrofit and historic restoration of the Glendale-Hyperion Complex of Bridges. It will ensure that pedestrians and bicyclists can safely cross the river during the three year construction schedule.

“Today we’re celebrating the birth of a new bridge, and we don’t get to do that very often in Los Angeles,” said Gary Lee Moore. General Manager of the Bureau of Engineering. “There is nothing more rewarding than repurposing existing infrastructure to create a structure the entire community can enjoy. Thank you to Councilmember O’Farrell for the support, and to the community for staying engaged in the design process.”

The new bridge will span 430 feet across the waterway and take one year to complete. The project will also include the relocation of a mural depicting the historic red car trolley that is currently displayed on the eastern most pier.

“Arts and culture thrive in this city, whether its inside a museum or on the side of a bridge in the public realm,” said Danielle Brazell, General Manager of the Department of Cultural Affairs who will oversee the relocation of the iconic Raphael Escamilla mural. “The department looks forward to working with the community on finding an appropriate alternate location for the Red Car Trolley mural.”

Local preservationists will work with the department on the mural relocation and preserving a piece of Atwater Village history.

“We’re excited about the bridge, and we look forward to walking across in a years time,” said Netty Carr, Friends of Atwater Village.