Newport Beach council to consider upgrades to Sunset View Park

Superior/Coast Highway bridge
A rendering shows the proposed pedestrian bridge that would connect Sunset Ridge and Sunset View parks in West Newport.
(Rendering courtesy of the city of Newport Beach)

The Newport Beach City Council is poised to add substantial amenities to a West Newport park, including a pedestrian bridge, expanded parking and a dog park.

Sunset View Park, which sits at Superior Avenue and Coast Highway, could get 64 more parking spaces, a 0.2-acre dog park on its north end and a concrete bridge spanning Superior to connect it to its larger sister park, Sunset Ridge Park, with the council’s conceptual approval Tuesday.

Sunset Ridge Park was completed in 2014 but has been underutilized because of parking and access issues, city officials say. The park offers walking paths, a playground, two general sports fields and a baseball diamond covering 13.7 blufftop acres — but no on-site parking.

Sunset View is a swath of open space with benches and a paved, 64-space parking lot for visitors to both Sunset Ridge and the beach.


In either case, pedestrians have to cross Superior — a curving, divided road with four travel and three turn lanes to connect motorists to the even wider Coast Highway.

Sunset View bridge with dog park
A birds-eye view of Sunset View Park with the bridge over Superior Avenue, a doubled parking lot and a 0.2-acre dog park. The dog park is the green turf wedge to the upper right, just above the parking lot.
(Courtesy of city of Newport Beach)

The dog park is the most controversial of the proposed upgrades. The city has received feedback from several neighboring condo residents concerned about noise, odors and traffic. At their request, city staff drew up alternatives eliminating the fenced dog park and replacing it with open, grassy landscaping.

The full project, including the dog park, is estimated to cost about $8.8 million. A version without the dog park would cost about $100,000 less. If approved, construction could begin in 2021.


Library lecture hall

In other business, the council will consider awarding a design contract for a standalone lecture and performance hall adjacent to the Central Library.

A design committee composed of library trustees and others recommended the council go with a $638,000 contract for Newport Beach-based architectural firm Robert R. Coffee Architect + Associates.

Construction is estimated to cost another $7 million and could begin in 2021, with completion by 2023. A mix of public and privately raised dollars would fund the project.

The proposed 7,000-square-foot, single-story building, with fixed auditorium-style seating for 275 people and room for 50 portable overflow seats, would be constructed immediately southwest of the Central Library and City Hall, at the edge of the library parking lot.

Lecture hall location
The proposed lecture hall location is shown to the lower left of the Newport Beach Central Library.
(Courtesy of city of Newport Beach)

It’s an upgrade over the Friends Room, which opened in 1994 with the Central Library at 1000 Avocado Ave. and currently hosts author talks and intimate musical and dance performances along with city staff training, children’s programming and Friends of the Library’s fundraising book sales.

Tuesday’s regular council meeting will start at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 100 Civic Center Drive.

Support our coverage by becoming a digital subscriber.