LOS ANGELES — After years in development, the Taylor Yard Bridge opened March 14 for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the Los Angeles River between Cypress Park and Elysian Valley.
“This new bridge is the result of perseverance and persistence from everyone involved over a 30-year period,” Councilman Mitch O’Farrell said during a celebration for the opening.
“This decades-long journey began with former Council members Mike Hernandez and Ed Reyes, their staff members and countless neighbors in Elysian Valley and Cypress Park on either side of the Los Angeles River. Over the past eight years, it has been my honor to take the baton in bringing this collective effort to completion.”
The $27.2 million bridge project was part of the L.A. River Revitalization Master Plan that the City Council adopted in 2007, but construction didn’t begin until 2018. The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority funded the project.
“Our river is more than just a concrete flood channel — it’s one of the great natural wonders of our city, and a precious resource for all our communities,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said. “The opening of the Taylor Yard Bridge is an important milestone in our work to give Angelenos more access to this iconic waterway, as well as new places to safely walk, bike, and enjoy green spaces.”
The project will connect the future 42-acre Taylor Yard G2 River Park with the Los Angeles River Bike Path, which, when all the segments are complete, will be a continuous 51-mile path from Canoga Park to Long Beach. The Taylor Yard G2 River Park, which the city aims to open in 2028, will include open space, habitat restoration and access to the L.A. River.
“The bridge is a win for everyone and brings neighborhoods together, which we need more of as the pandemic hopefully winds down,” Councilman Gil Cedillo said.
The councilman added that the bridge will provide northeast Los Angeles residents with access to Elysian Park, riverfront restaurants and downtown L.A., while those on the Elysian Valley side can more easily access Sotomayor Arts and Sciences magnet schools, Rio de Los Angeles State Park, Cypress Park Library and surrounding neighborhoods markets and stores.
The bridge was designed by Zoltan E. Pali and his firm SPF:architects. Pali told City News Service that he was inspired by “historic railroad bridges that used to go throughout the city and used to cross the river.”
The bike and pedestrian pathway is about 18 feet wide, but the whole structure is 30 feet tall, 27 feet wide and about 400 feet long.