Officials on Friday took a significant step toward building a suicide prevention net under the Golden Gate Bridge.
The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District's Board of Directors voted to approve a $2 million contract with the California Highway Patrol to manage traffic during construction. Construction on the bridge's long-delayed prevention net is expected to start this year and finish in 2021.
The CHP will be paid for opening and closing designated lanes at night, when the bulk of the work is expected to occur. The construction is scheduled for nighttime because less cars are on the road.
Officials say the net will be positioned 20 feet down from the sidewalk and extend out another 20 feet. Made of stainless steel, the sturdy structure will curve up slightly at its ends.
There has been ongoing debate about the effectiveness and cost of the net —totaling $193 million — from the bridge district, state and federal officials.
But Kymberly Renee Gamboa supports the barrier’s speedy construction.
“There was never any indication and no one said there was any indication he wanted to take his life,” she said of her 18-year-old son Kyle who leaped from the bridge to his death in 2013.
Gamboa added: “Right now, this is so other people don’t have to go through this and other people do not have to die.”
A professional services agreement in the amount $882,831 will be awarded to Environmental Sciences Associates of San Francisco subject to the District receiving the California Department of Transportation's approval of the agreement before execution.