Huntington Beach Mayor Don Hansen, in his last day as an OCTA Director, is email boasting about finally killing the 19th Street Bridge that could have been built across the Santa Ana River flood channel between HB and Costa Mesa:
Today was my last meeting as a member of the Board of Directors due to reaching my term limit as a Huntington Beach Council Member. I am proud to deliver the elimination of this bridge to our community as one of my final official acts.
This multi-decade battle is finally over and the residents of the affected communities can now rest easy without the fear of this bridge being advanced in the future.
I appreciate all of those who participated in this process. I think it is proof-positive that you can make an impact through activism.
Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your voice.
The bridge has been controversial for years; neither Huntington Beach or Costa Mesa wanted it for the traffic it would supposedly generate. Newport Beach was in favor of it and once threatened to sue if it wasn’t built as part of an OCTA Master Plan.
But the bottom line here was simply NIMBYism — area residents feared it might cause more traffic, but no current studies appear available to prove that. What is evident is that crossing the River for a long stretch between Adams Ave. and PCH is still NOT possible, and that causes a level of inconvenience. It’s also likely that certain plans for development in the area were dependent on the bridge, but the NIMBYs will have prevented that, or at least caused some changes in strategy and a loss in tax revenue for those homes that may not now be built.