The Los Angeles Times reports progress toward completion of the Long Beach Freeway (I-710) gap between Valley Boulevard in East Los Angeles and Pasadena, with a geologic study finding a tunnel alignment to be feasible. Real progress is overdue. My great aunt and great uncle were forced out of their house in the early 1960s in South Pasadena by the California Highway Department, in anticipation of building the freeway. I suspect the house is still there.
For nearly one-half century, South Pasadena residents have opposed building the “Meridian” route that would have dissected the city. They were not against the freeway per se, but rather preferred the “Westerly” route, which would have skirted the city. The state had selected the Meridian route. In the middle 1980s, while a member of the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission, I served on a special route selection committee chaired by former county supervisor Peter F. Schabarum. Under our legislative authority, we also selected the Meridian route. Nothing came of it.
It is to be hoped that serious efforts to close the gap will be underway soon.