L.A. Mayor VillaraigosaLOS ANGELES, Calif. /California Newswire/ — Mayor Villaraigosa today joined Councilmember Jose Huizar to announce that the architecture firm HNTB is the winner of the international design competition for the redesign of the 6th Street Bridge.

“The new 6th Street Bridge will be a world-class, iconic piece of Los Angeles infrastructure because of this international design competition and the community’s involvement every step of the way,” said Mayor Villaraigosa. “Los Angeles is where the world creates and innovates, and the selection of HNTB as the winning team reaffirms our ability to cultivate and attract the best and brightest in architecture, design, and engineering right here in Los Angeles.”

In April, the Mayor and Councilmember Huizar announced an international design competition for the redesign and replacement of the 80-year-old 6th Street Bridge. Over the past four years, Councilmember Huizar worked with the Bureau of Engineering to ensure that substantial community outreach and input took place before last November’s City Council vote to replace the bridge as the safest and most cost-effective alternative.

“When I instructed the Bureau of Engineering to bring the best of the best to the City of Los Angeles to design the new Sixth Street Viaduct, they certainly delivered,” said Councilmember José Huizar. “This bridge by HNTB honors the history of the original while boldly looking towards the future with major river, pedestrian, multi-modal and community gathering features. Our new bridge will not only bring people from Point A to Point B, but to Point C – the bridge itself. It will be a shining-star destination spot worthy of the City of Angels.”

The final three design proposals by AECOM, HNTB, and Parsons Brinckerhoff were revealed at a public meeting in September. The winning design was chosen by a panel made of members from the Bureau of Engineering and Caltrans, with unanimous support from the Design Aesthetic Advisory Committee (DAAC). The DAAC consists of professionals in the engineering, architecture, and urban planning professions, as well as residents of the surrounding neighborhoods, local business representatives, and river advocates.

HNTB’s proposed design includes canted cable supported arches, providing an iconic “stress ribbon” for the whole length of the viaduct. The design also includes access points for the community at the base of each arch and community gathering space on either side of the river, as well as direct access to the river. Images of the proposed design concept are attached to the digital copy of this release.

“The HNTB Sixth Street Viaduct conceptual design – a ribbon of arches – melds current structural technology with an aesthetic vision that embraces the entire 3,500 foot length,” said City Engineer Gary Lee Moore. “It will be an infrastructure element that I anticipate will become an icon for Los Angeles.”

The bridge is being replaced due serious safety concerns. Elements of the current bridge have cracked and deteriorated over the past 80 years due to an internal chemical reaction called Alkali Silica Reaction (ASR) and it is subject to failure during a major earthquake.

The $401 million redesign and construction of the 6th Street Bridge will support almost 5,000 jobs and is the largest of the Bureau of Engineering’s $1 billion bridge portfolio. The majority of the funding for the 6th Street Bridge project comes from the Federal Highway Bridge Program. The remaining money is a combination of State Prop 1B funds and local matching through Measure R and Prop C.

Construction is expected to begin in 2015 after approval from the Board of Public Works and the City Council. The project is expected to be completed in late 2018 and opened in 2019.

View a video about the project: