710 Freeway Extension
FACT SHEET (DRAFT #1 8-09)
In 1959, a Master Plan of Freeways was adopted by the State of California. The Long Beach Freeway Interstate, now the I-710 and SR-710, was outlined in that plan. In 1964, a 23 mile portion of the freeway was built that runs from Ocean Boulevard west of downtown Long Beach, north to Valley Boulevard in Alhambra, just west of El Sereno. The second portion was never built due to intense community opposition that spanned over forty years. Only 60% of the projects shown in the original Master Plan have ever been completed.
In 2008, Caltrans began a geotechnical study to test the feasibility of extending the SR-710 freeway to the I-210 via the construction of a tunnel. Currently, five zones have been examined through boring, seismic reflection, and surface wave testing. To date, the route neutral study is not complete but preliminary observations indicate that the most likely option may be to construct a tunnel 4-6 miles in length within Zone 2 or 3 to connect with SR-2 or directly to the I-210. This proposed tunnel would be the longest ever built in the United States. Issues of cost, monitoring & safety, air quality, congestion, and noise are currently being discussed among the residents of the nearby cities.
There are 34,000 vehicles that currently leave the Ports of Los Angeles every day; most are trucks carrying cargo to locations outside the City. By 2025, it is estimated that the number will climb to 91,000. If constructed, the tunnel and the adjacent freeways would carry the additional burden of these vehicles. This project would severely impact the neighboring cities for better or worse.
Cities of Alhambra, (list others who officially support)
Caltrans, Metro, Federal Highway Administration, Southern California Association of Governments
Ports of Los Angeles
Labor Unions (name them)
At the north end of the existing 710, traffic spills out on to city streets causing congestion. Completion of the extension will move cars beyond affected cities and lighten street traffic.
This project has been partially funded by Measure R which brought in $780 million. Additional funding would be needed to reach the final cost. This money could be public or private funds. Collecting tolls at the tunnel entrance would provide a future tax source for the State and County.
The tunnel project would create jobs in the State.
Current traffic, noise & pollution levels surrounding the 710 are unacceptable. Cities might consider another solution if a better project is proposed and paid for.
Cities of South Pasadena, Pasadena, El Sereno, La Canada, Glendale,
Local Community Groups (name them)
Glassell Park Improvement Assn.,
There are many options to reduce street traffic in affected areas including making substantial upgrades to the existing freeway system and local roads (Multi-Mode, Low Build).
The current 710 is crowded with cargo trucks from the harbor. Using rail and air rather than trucks is an effective way to move goods to outlying areas and a 21st century solution to freeway crowding.
The tax burden that this project would inflict on our already encumbered State and counties would be astounding. Our children and grandchildren would be paying the estimated $11.8 billion or more for years to come.
A rail project would create jobs in the State. Multi-Mode, Low build projects would add even more and quicker.
The additional traffic, noise & pollution levels to areas next to this project would be unacceptable. Alternate solutions must be considered.
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