SAN FRANCISCO — Work officially began Thursday on a net under the Golden Gate Bridge intended to prevent and deter the dozens of suicides that take place at the iconic landmark each year, CBS San Francisco reported.
More than 1,500 people are thought to have died there over the bridge’s 80-year lifespan.
The stainless steel net, located about 20 feet below the bridge’s sidewalk, will span 1.7 miles of roadway on each side of the bridge and extend 20 feet out over the water.
It will be built over a period of four years, at a cost of just over $200 million drawn from a mix of federal, state and local sources.
At a ceremony today to mark the start of the project, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said that during the long process of obtaining the funding for the project, people would ask her, “isn’t that a lot of money for a net?”
“And we would say no, it’s not a lot of money for a life, for all of these lives,” Pelosi* said.
*Though financial-disclosure forms list only ranges of assets and liabilities, Pelosi listed between $42.4 million and $199.5 million in assets in 2013, which was enough for Bloomberg Business to deem her the richest member of House leadership from either party. By 2014, she and her husband, investment banker Paul Pelosi, were doing even better: She reported between $43.4 million and $202 million in assets. (Pelosi’s husband, in fact, has done so well that he tried the quixotic hobby of investing in an alternative to the National Football League, losing between $100,000 and $1 million in 2014.)