[KHTS] – The Santa Clarita City Council voted 5-0 Tuesday to honor one of the city’s founders posthumously.
On a motion by Councilman TimBen Boydston, seconded by Councilwoman Laurene Weste, the council approved Mayor Pro-tem Bob Kellar’s proposal to name the Golden Valley Road bridge over Highway 14 for Connie Worden-Roberts.
The 1975 SCV Woman of the year, Worden-Roberts went on to champion infrastructure improvements as the area grew in the 1980s and beyond. A crowning achievement was the cross-valley connector, which earned her the moniker of Santa Clarita’s “road warrior.” The Golden Valley Road freeway bridge is a component of the cross-valley connector.
“The great things that we enjoy today have been brought forth by the great people of yesterday,” Kellar said in reference to Worden-Roberts prior to Tuesday night’s council meeting.
The recognition is something many have discussed for years, and especially since her death last August.
“Over and over again, (Worden-Roberts) was a linchpin for the city,” said then-Mayor Weste a year ago when she presented Worden-Roberts with a key to the city. “You have no idea what a fight that was. Cities were created when there were little populations, but we weren’t a little population.”
Worden-Roberts personally helped gather more than 2,000 of 24,000 signatures needed, city officials said. She also mentored countless individuals, Weste said, including herself.
In addition to being one of nine names on the original petition to the Los Angeles County Formation Commission — and a major factor in the $245 million, 8.5-mile roadway connecting the valley — Worden-Roberts seemingly is ubiquitous on volunteer committees and Santa Clarita Valley organizations.
The particular road in question is being upgraded as part of the Golden Valley Bridge Widening Project, which is expected to be completed next summer. The plan is to put three lanes in each direction on the bridge, per city officials.
Because the Golden Valley Road-Highway 14 bridge falls within Caltrans right-of-way, formal recognition of the bridge must be performed at the state level, through the passage of a resolution by the state Legislature, officials said.
Caltrans has confirmed the bridge doesn’t currently have a formal name, and is available for recognition.
In order to initiate the process for formal recognition, the city would contact one of the members of our state legislative delegation to request the introduction of a resolution to recognize the path, according to a city staff report.
The process of adopting a resolution by the Legislature follows a similar process as an item of legislation, making it difficult to determine the length of the time required for both the Senate and Assembly to pass the resolution.
Most resolutions of this type are successfully passed within the same legislative session in which they were introduced, according to Caltrans.
The estimated cost for Caltrans to manufacture and install memorial signage on either side of the bridge is approximately $2,500 per sign.
Funds are available in the Street Maintenance Traffic Signs and Markings expenditure account.