A Wider, Safer Beach Trail for Everyone

September 19, 2019 2:47 PM
by Delana Gbenekama

Pictured above is a rendering of the upgraded North Beach Trail.

The Santa Monica Beach Trail is an iconic beachfront destination where residents and visitors flock to walk, jog and bike, among other things.

Starting September 23, 2019, construction will begin for the North Beach Trail Improvement Project to upgrade the heavily used trail to enhance the safety and mobility of pedestrians and cyclists. The project entails improvements to a 2-mile stretch of the trail between Bay Street and north city limits to widen the existing bike path and add a separate, clearly defined path for pedestrians. Ocean Front Walk will be renovated north of the Pier with new paving, lighting and seating. Construction is anticipated to be completed in November 2020.

The map above shows the construction timeline and phases. The Pier and surrounding businesses will remain open for the public to enjoy throughout the duration of construction. To minimize disruption to the public, construction will take place in phases beginning at the northern limits of Santa Monica. During each phase, construction will be performed in incremental sections. Signage will provide direction for pedestrian detours and any closures, and there will be a temporary path for cyclists and pedestrians in the construction zone. Cyclists must dismount and walk their bikes on the temporary path. Parking Lot 4 North will be used as the construction staging area and will be closed during construction.

We encourage you to check santamonica.gov/northbeachtrail where more details regarding each phase will be posted as the project advances. The Santa Monica Beach Trail is a 3-mile section of the Marvin Braude Bike Trail (MBBT), which extends from Pacific Palisades to Torrance. The Santa Monica portion of the trail is the most heavily used segment of the MBBT, which is why this project is essential. In recent years, it has become more congested with pedestrians, cyclists and rollerbladers vying for space, and all traveling at different speeds. Adding a separate walking path to the 2-mile section that is currently a path shared by both cyclists and pedestrians will improve safety and mobility for all users, particularly around the Pier and the Parking Lot 1 North (1550 parking lot).

The project also demonstrates the City’s ongoing commitment to the wellbeing of residents, since walking and biking are vital parts of the sustainable Santa Monica lifestyle as expressed by residents. Additionally, encouraging people to walk and bike by improving the pedestrian and bike paths will contribute toward the City’s goals of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

Other upgrades that will be implemented as part of the project include the following:

Learn more and stay informed at an upcoming event:

Pop-Up Event on the Beach

For project updates, contact Brian Ochoa, Architecture Services Project Manager, at Brian.Ochoa@smgov.net or at (310) 458-8320, or visit santamonica.gov/northbeachtrail. 

Authored By

Delana Gbenekama
Equity and Communications Program Manager