Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Full Freeway Closure of the Arroyo Seco Parkway (SR-110)

LOS ANGELES – The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will close northbound Arroyo Seco Parkway (SR-110) from the Hollywood Freeway (US 101) to Figueroa Street, and the north- and southbound US 101 connectors to northbound SR-110 this weekend for maintenance.

Closures will last from 10 p.m. on Saturday, Mar. 3 to 8 a.m. on Sunday, Mar. 4.

Signed detours will be in place with help from our Traffic Management Team. Closures are subject to change.

Several Caltrans maintenance crews will change the lamps in the tunnels and on signs, clean the tunnel walls, fix guardrail, and remove graffiti within the five tunnels along the highway.

“This is an efficient use of our resources to get as much work done as we can within a closure in one shot.” said Deputy District 7 Director of Maintenance Dan Freeman.

Caltrans reminds motorists to “Slow For The Cone Zone.”

Monday, February 27, 2012

Full Freeway Closure for Paramount Blvd. Bridge Demolition Pomona Freeway (SR-60)

Today’s Date: February 27, 2012
District: 7--Los Angeles/Ventura
Contact: Patrick Chandler
Phone: (213) 897-3630


Montebello — The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) will demolish the remaining sections of the Paramount Boulevard bridge above westbound SR-60 tonight. Up to two lanes of eastbound SR-60 will be closed from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. Monday, Feb. 27. Westbound SR-60 is expected to be fully closed from 12 a.m. to 5 a.m. Motorists should expect delays. Residents should expect noise.
Closures are weather permitting.

SR-60 was closed on Wednesday, December 14 at noon when a fuel tanker truck caught fire under the Paramount Blvd. Bridge in Montebello requiring the closure of SR-60 from the Long Beach Freeway (I-710) to the San Gabriel River Freeway (I-605).

Motorists are advised to plan ahead, be patient, and use alternate routes or public transportation, if possible. Signed detours are in place. The latest freeway traffic information can be obtained on the Caltrans website: by accessing the Quickmaps feature.

Project fact sheet

Caltrans reminds motorists to “Slow For The Cone Zone.”

Closure Notice: SR-47 in Long Beach

If you live or work in Long Beach, we’d like you to know about closures affecting SR-47 this week. Details:

Daily, 2/27 to 3/2, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

One lane of northbound and southbound SR-47 between Ocean Boulevard and Henry Ford Avenue.

Nightly, 2/27 to 3/1, 7 p.m. to 5 a.m.

One lane of northbound SR-47 between Ocean Boulevard and Henry Ford Avenue.

Nightly, 2/27 to 3/1, 7 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Full freeway closure of southbound SR-47 between New Dock Street and Ocean Boulevard.

The closures are related to the $200 million Schuyler Heim Bridge project, which replaces the existing lift-span bridge with a fixed-span structure. Construction began in November 2011 and is expected to wrap up in early 2016.

Thursday, February 23, 2012


The California Transportation Commission (CTC) today allocated $253 million in new funding to 30 projects that will improve the state’s transportation system and strengthen California’s economic recovery.

The allocations include $206 million from Proposition 1B, a transportation bond approved by voters in 2006. In total, nearly $12 billion in Proposition 1B funds have been allocated statewide.

The remaining $47 million in allocations came from assorted transportation accounts funded by state and federal dollars.

Among the local projects that received funding allocations today were:

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Two 55-Hour Closures at the Harbor Freeway (SR-110) 9th Street Off-Ramp

Caltrans will close the northbound State Route 110 off-ramp at 9th Street in downtown Los Angeles for 55 hours beginning Friday, February 24, at 10 p.m. and continuing through Monday, Feb. 27 at 5 a.m. in time for the morning commute. Off-ramps before and after the 9th Street off-ramp will remain open.

A second 55-hour closure at this location will repeat on the following weekend beginning Friday, March 2, through Monday, March 5.

The work at this location will replace the pavement and drainage system as part of the SR-110 Widening and Rehabilitation Project that will add outside merge lanes, improve the SR-110/I-10 interchange, upgrade ramps and enhance access to the downtown LA area.

The $25 million project is estimated to complete by summer 2013. Caltrans advises motorists to please “Slow For The Cone Zone.”

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Bess Avenue Pedestrian Bridge to Close this Week

Starting tomorrow, February 22, the Bess Avenue pedestrian bridge over I-10 in Baldwin Park will be closed for construction. The bridge will be demolished and reconstructed as part of a project that’s adding a carpool lane to each direction of I-10 between I-605 and Puente Avenue (about 2.2 miles). The bridge will be out of commission until this summer. Now the good news: The Athol Street bridge, which has been closed since last summer, is open.

Questions? Call us at (213) 897-3656.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Rain Prompts Extension of Southbound I-5 Closures in San Fernando Valley

Here’s one of the pesky challenges of freeway construction: You can spend weeks carefully planning the work schedule only to have rain throw everything off track.

Which is exactly what happened this week with the I-5 carpool lane project between SR-118 and SR-170 -- and many other Caltrans projects as well. We’re mentioning this in connection with the carpool lane project only because the southbound I-5 overnight freeway closures that were supposed to end this morning will go into next week to make up for the days when crews couldn’t work due to rain. Closure details for next week:

Dates: February 21 - 23

Time: 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m.

For each closure date, the closure begins on the date listed and ends the following morning. For example, on Feb. 23, the closure begins at 11:59 p.m. and ends at 6 a.m. Feb. 24.

Does this mean the project will take longer to complete than previously stated? No. Weather delays are inevitable, so we include some extra time in the construction schedule to reflect days lost to inclement weather. The project is on track to wrap up early next year.

The closures are part of a
project that's building a new connector between I-5 and SR-170 and new carpool lanes on I-5 between SR-170 and SR-118. Crews will be working on the new connector during the closures. As always, the closures are subject to change, and detours will be signed. (See map above.)

If you have questions, visit the
I-5 website or call the toll-free hotline at (855) 454-6335.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

From the Archives: The Gyro Car!

Caltrans surveyors have always used finely calibrated, state-of-the-art equipment in their work. Sixty years ago, finely calibrated, state-of-the art equipment included the Gyro Car, which was basically a station wagon tricked out with a sensitive odometer and gyroscopes. The Gyro Car allowed crews to complete alignment and grade surveys of roadways more quickly than ever before.

This exciting advancement was prominently featured in an effusive article in a 1952 issue of California Highways and Public Works, a magazine published by the Division of Highways, Caltrans’ precursor. As impressive as this vehicle was in 1952, the Gyro Car did have a few drawbacks, as the article’s author noted:

"It is necessary to take all the spring action out of the vehicle to get true grade and super readings … When the spring action is taken out of the car, the vibration is necessarily increased, making it harder to take notes … " (italics original)

Fortunately, the spring action in the vehicles used today is intact, so surveyors have no problem taking notes.

Learn more about Caltrans surveys here.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Southbound I-5 Closures in the San Fernando Valley This Week

For those of you who drive southbound I-5 in the San Fernando Valley, a friendly reminder about the freeway closures now underway. Details:

Dates: February 12-16

Time: 11:59 p.m. to 6 a.m.

For each closure date, the closure begins on the date listed and ends the following morning. For example, on Feb. 12, the closure began at 11:59 p.m. and ended at 6 a.m. this morning.

The closures are part of a project that's building a new connector between I-5 and SR-170 and new carpool lanes on I-5 between SR-170 and SR-118. Crews will be working on the new connector during the closures. As always, the closures are subject to change, and detours will be signed. (See map above.)

If you have questions, visit the I-5 website or call the toll-free hotline at (855) 454-6335.

Friday, February 10, 2012

The First of Her Kind, But Not the Last

In honor of Black History Month, we would like to showcase one of our own trailblazers.

An engineer’s journey to be recognized for her work and not her color.

“I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me. All I ask is that you respect me as a human being,” said late baseball great Jackie Robinson.

American history shows that the road for respect and recognition beyond color is a hard traveled road, but it can be done.

Louise Cooper is one of the many minds that have graced Caltrans with their intellects, creativity, logic, and talent. During almost 39 years with Caltrans, Cooper worked on major projects such as the I-405/I-605 Interchange, the Golden State Freeway (I-5), the Artesia Freeway (SR-91), a bicycle path for the Santa Ana River, and the Glenn Anderson Freeway (SR-105).

Cooper was originally drawn to the Division of Highways (as Caltrans was called back then) in 1953 while she was attending Los Angeles State College (known now as Cal State University, Los Angeles). As a math major, Cooper saw an engineering aide position at the Division of Highways (DH) as an opportunity for her to use her talents doing the kind of work that she loved. More...

Under Los Angeles, Under Caltrans

Caltrans is well known for being the agency that maintains, builds, owns, and operates the state’s freeway and highway system, but many are unaware of the department’s efforts to preserve the state’s heritage.

On the fourth floor of Caltrans District 7 building at 100 S. Main Street, there is a collection of bottles, pipes, Chinese stoneware, washing detergent, and much more. Although these items appear to be discarded debris left by early Angelenos, they help to us to understand what Los Angeles was like 80 to 150 years ago.

These items were found under the parking lot that was located were our building is now in the mid-2000s. Fortunately, our Cultural Resources Unit which is comprised of archaeologists, historians, environmental planners, preservationists, to name a few, were able to excavate and preserve these precious items that help us to understand our California heritage..

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Construction Update! I-5/SR-14 Direct Connector Project

If you drive I-5 in north Los Angeles County on a regular basis, chances are you’ve been watching the new I-5/SR direct connector take shape. When completed, the direct connector will allow you to transfer between I-5 and SR-14 without ever leaving the carpool lane, hence direct connector.

So what’s happening with this project, now in its fourth year? Well, good news! The project is 80% complete. It’s on time and within budget, and will be finished in mid-2013. Currently crews are working on the bridge median and paving. Check out the slideshow below for a look at the construction now underway, including exclusive photos of work you can’t see from the freeway. It’s pretty impressive, even if you don’t know anything about freeway construction -- definitely worth a click-through. Click on the white text bubble in the lower left corner if you'd like to read the captions.

For more information about this project, check out the fact sheet on the I-5 website. (Sign up to automatically receive closure information while you're there.) If you have questions or comments, call us on the toll-free I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335. Tell us what’s on your mind.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Paramount Bridge Blvd. (PBB) Repair Update

The effort to rebuild the Paramount Blvd. bridge in the City of Montebello is underway. Currently, the project is undergoing an expedited review process and construction work is expected to begin in late February. The bridge is expected to be open to the public in June 2012.

Project Resources:

Project Fact Sheet (.pdf)

Below are a few facts about the project:

• Caltrans, the County of Los Angeles and the cities of Montebello and Monterey Park have been working closely together to address re-opening the Paramount Boulevard overcrossing.

• The Emergency Relief Program consists of two parts: emergency work/operations completed during the first 180 days of the incident with 100 percent reimbursement of eligible costs, and permanent restoration with 88.53 percent reimbursement rate.

• Replacement of this bridge in the shortest possible time is essential for re-opening Paramount Boulevard overcrossing and associated ramps in order to restore access for essential emergency, commercial and commuter services.

• Environmental review will be expedited due to the emergency nature of this project. Caltrans abides by all federal and state environmental review standards for all construction projects.

• Caltrans is coordinating with utilities to ensure all permit and cooperative agreement requirements are met.

• You may hear construction noise during construction hours, but it will not exceed levels allowed by state and federal regulations.

For any questions about this project, please contact Public Information Officer Patrick Chandler at 213-897-3630 or

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Closure Notice: Side Street Access to Firestone Blvd. in Norwalk

If you live north of Firestone Boulevard between Shoemaker Avenue and Carmenita Road, there are some closures coming up next week we’d like you to know about. Access to and from North Firestone Boulevard will be blocked at Dinard Avenue, Maryton Avenue, Fidel Avenue, Painter Avenue and Gracebee Avenue. (See detour map.) The closures will begin Monday, February 6, and run through August 2012. Caltrans staff delivered flyers to homes in the impacted area yesterday to inform residents about the closures.

Access to Firestone will be blocked to allow crews to realign the street and make room for the I-5 widening project now underway. The project is building one new carpool lane and one new general purpose lane in each direction, reconstructing the Carmenita Road bridge as a 10-lane concrete structure with new ramps, and realigning and upgrading frontage roads.

Questions? Call us on the toll-free I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335 or check out the I-5 website.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

PARK 101 Panel

Can you build a park above the Hollywood Freeway (US 101) in downtown Los Angeles? It is possible. A panel discussion will be held to discuss this possibility:

Thursday, February 16, 2012
1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes
501 North Main St.
Los Angeles, CA 90012

PARK 101 is a progressive and innovative urban planning vision formulated in June 2008 to incorporate the unique characteristics of downtown Los Angeles and reconnect a downtown area that was split by the construction of US 101.

The PARK 101 District is a visionary urban design solution to “cap” a half-mile length of U.S. 101 in Downtown Los Angeles. This is a very ambitious project that involves the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), City of Los Angeles, Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG), Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro), and EDAW (a major urban design company). With this partnership, it is hoped that PARK 101 can become a reality.