At a cost of $699,413, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors will certainly have one expensive ramp. Back in February, the board voted to construct a 10-foot wheelchair ramp in the Board of Supervisors' chambers and the tab is really adding up. Supervisor John Avalos was the only official to vote against its construction, arguing that it was not the best use of funds. Avalos commented that “This is a tremendous amount of money being spent on something in City Hall that rarely or may never even get used. Meanwhile, there are so many other needs for handicapped access that are really needed that are going unfunded.” The ramp was originally slated to cost $1.1 million. Chronicle columnists Phillip Matier and Andrew Ross tally up the costs:
“Costs include $25,200 for materials, $201,678 for labor and $49,000 for a set of historically accurate brass handrails. Outside historic experts to keep an eye on the work are getting $48,824. Miscellaneous costs bring the construction job's total to $477,000 and change. Also, because the job could take 10 weeks, the supervisors have set aside $51,042 to pay for relocating board meetings.”
They point out that at $699,413, the ramp is $50,000 more than the median cost of a home in the Sunset District.