Close Panel

Mission Canyon Bridge Studies

Image of Mission Canyon Bridge Studies Logo


Mission Canyon Bridge spans Mission Creek and is located to the north of Mission Santa Barbara and Mission Historical Park, south of Rocky Nook Park, and east of the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. The bridge was constructed by Rowland Hazard in 1891, and a wooden sidewalk was added to the bridge in 1929. The bridge was widened on the downstream side in 1930.

In 1998, the bridge was registered as a City Landmark as part of the Mission Historical Park. As of February 2020, the bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Per City Council direction in 2016, the Mission Canyon Bridge Studies (Studies) has been under way to identify physical, functional, environmental, and funding constraints to consider if a project is needed to address deficiencies in the bridge and the surrounding roadway. Funding for the Studies is primarily provided by the Federal Highway Bridge Program (HBP), which is administered by the State of California Department of Transportation (Caltrans).

Why the Mission Canyon Bridge Studies?:

The City began studies in April of 2019 to observe the existing challenges of the bridge, such as:

  • Declining structural integrity of the bridge.
  • Preparation for earthquakes. Under the northwest side of the bridge, there is a fault line.
  • Improving vehicular, pedestrian, and bicyclist safety as part of the Vision Zero project.
  • Ensuring passage across the bridge is a safe and efficient evacuation route. Rocky Nook Park was the site of a debris flow.

Contact Us:

If you have any questions or would like to share your thoughts about this study, please email

Image of map of Mission Canyon Bridge

What's Happening?

  • Mission Canyon Bridge Studies at City Council - August 10, 2021
    The Public Works Department is requesting City Council to provide direction on the options that have been developed as part of the initial Mission Canyon Bridge Studies, and whether to continue with the Highway Bridge Program grant. Agenda and Staff Report will be posted on August 5, 2021, on the City Council Meetings Online webpage linked here: City Council Meetings Online.

  • Concept Review at Historic Landmark Commission (HLC) – June 9, 2021
    On June 9, 2021, a concept hearing was held with the HLC to review the initial findings from the preliminary technical studies and review the same three conceptual bridge treatment options and three roadway approach options that were shown to the community in December 2020.
  • Initial Findings and Options Webinar – December 2, 2020
    A community webinar on December 2nd was held to review initial findings from the preliminary technical studies and review ideas for potential enhancements to the bridge and roadway.
    Over the last year and a half, the City of Santa Barbara has started technical studies around Mission Canyon Bridge. These studies have included initial work on geotechnical studies of soils and seismic considerations, hydraulic studies of flooding risks and water flow, water quality and storm water reviews, safety analysis and transportation studies, biological studies, archaeological and historic resource analysis, and others.
  • Studies Effort Kick-Off – April 25, 2019
    The City of Santa Barbara kicked off the Mission Canyon Bridge Studies effort in a community meeting held at Rocky Nook Park.
  • City Council Hearing – June 21, 2016
    Council provides direction to City staff to pursue a Highway Bridge Program grant for Mission Canyon Bridge.

Project Resources:

Link to Constraints Report Appendices below:

Stay Informed

Newsletter Logo

What’s happening with this project? Subscribe here to receive notifications.

Last Updated: Aug 9, 2021
Top of Page