Carlsbad to upgrade ocean access points

Carlsbad to upgrade ocean access points
The Carlsbad City Council approved an award to begin construction on the seven beach access points along Ocean Street. The entrances, such as the one here at Grand Avenue and Ocean Street, will include lighting, benches, bike racks and other improvements for safety and access. Photo by Steve Puterski

CARLSBAD — Construction is set to begin soon for seven ocean access points in Carlsbad Village.

The Carlsbad City Council approved an award to Blue Pacific Engineering & Construction, Inc. during the Oct. 24 meeting to begin work on the seven entrances from Oak Avenue to Rue Des Chateaux. The award is not to exceed $3,097,500 with an additional appropriation of $262,019 to the project’s budget for construction costs.

Some of the improvements include adding bike racks, benches, trash receptacles, lighting and crosswalks and beautifying the entrances with drought-tolerant landscaping. Another goal is to make the entrances easier to find and improve privacy, security and aesthetics for neighboring properties.

“The project is something we’ve been working on for a couple years now,” Carlsbad Parks Superintendent Kyle Lancaster said. “We think it’s going to be a great improvement for the community and enhance those accesses tremendously.”

The work will have a rather quick turnaround, as the construction is scheduled to begin in late November and finish in May 2018 before Memorial Day and avoiding the summer tourist season.

Plans were finalized on Aug. 22 with KTU+A Planning and Landscape Architecture. Five bids were received and Blue Pacific was awarded the contract.

The project is part of a Capital Improvement Program of enhancing the city’s coastline. Residents delivered massive amounts of feedback between 2015 and 2016, while the Schmidt Design Group developed the conceptual plans. The city held two community workshops, met with neighboring properties, sent mailers and e-blasts along with holding several public meetings.

“The landings at street level will be improved,” Lancaster said. “They will have a finish similar to the downtown Village area with decorative tile surfacing. We have parking signs at our city lots that have a nautical theme to them. We are mimicking those beach access signs for this project. There will be a definite tie into the Village.”

The city maintains five of the seven public access easements along Ocean Street and will assume maintenance of the easements on Oak and Cypress avenues.

The project and its new features will make the entrances more inviting, safer and easier to find, according to the city. Regular construction hours are 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

Those who live in the area or visit the surrounding neighborhood regularly may notice constructed-related noise and increased construction vehicle traffic.

Work on the seven entrances will be phased over the course of the project to allow public access to the beach.

Access will be restricted only to the beach entrances currently under construction.

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