Sunday, February 01, 2009

Will we ever get there ???

Key events in the 710 Freeway extension battle:

1951: California Legislature maps out the first route.

1964: Route modified as the "Meridian route," the first of three modifications through South Pasadena.

1973: South Pasadena and allies win an injunction blocking the extension pending an environmental study.

1989: National Trust for Historic Preservation declares South Pasadena one of America's 11 "endangered places" and indicates it would join the court fight against the extension.

1992: Gov. Pete Wilson's administration announces it will try to get the injunction lifted and build the extension. The federal government accepts the final version of the state's several environmental impact reports.

1998: The Federal Highway Administration approves the project based on the final version, but South Pasadena and allies go back to court and, the next year, win another injunction.

2003: The Bush administration rescinds its support of the court-stalled project, saying the data are outdated and require a new environmental study. Transportation officials begin revisiting the possibility of a tunnel, an idea earlier rejected as not feasible.

2006: Three possible routes are proposed for twin 4.5-mile tunnels to connect the 710 with the 210 after a Metropolitan Transportation Authority preliminary survey deems such a project feasible.

2009: Caltrans and the MTA begin a tunnel technical study of underground conditions along several additional possible routes to determine which, if any, are feasible.

Source: California Department of Transportation and Times research

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The 710 Gap Closure chronology underlines the fact that the most energetic project opposition campaign in So. Calif. history has not been able to stop the project. The reason? Because our freeway system doesn't work without plugging this gap. Completion will reduce congestion more than will any other highway project in Southern California and will reduce pollution more than will any project in 6-County Southern California. Fortunately the project is going forward with the unanimous approval of the MTA and the Calif. Transportation Commission, via a technical tunnel study. Lawsuits no longer stand in its way, for the first time in 30 years and funding has been identified, through private sources (repaid with tolls), Prop. R, and money from the Caltrans corridor real estate. Polls show overwhelming support for completion in Los Angeles (5 to 1), the San Gabriel Valley (6 to 1), El Sereno (2 to 1) and Pasadena (3 to 1) and Alhambra (7 to 1). South Pasadenans, who opposed a surface route 5 to 1 are evenly split on a tunnel completion. It's desperately needed, the public wants it badly and, fortunately, it is going forward.

Nat Read, Chair
710 Freeway Coalition