Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Long Beach Freeway, signed as Interstate 710 throughout its entire length and likewise as California State Highway 7 prior to 1981, is a freeway running for 23 miles in a north-south direction through Los Angeles County, California. For most of its route, it follows the course of the Los Angeles River. As originally planned, its route would travel from downtown Long Beach to the Foothill Freeway in Pasadena, where it would also connect the Pasadena and Foothill freeways. However, opposition to the project by residents of the city of South Pasadena, and the litigation resulting therefrom, have prevented Caltrans from completing the northernmost leg of the route; the freeway's northern terminus has thus been Valley Boulevard in far eastern Los Angeles since the 1960s.
The failure to complete both the Long Beach Freeway and the Glendale Freeway (which stops short of its intended southern terminus at the Hollywood Freeway in Echo Park) has resulted in incredible traffic congestion in northeastern Los Angeles and the northwestern San Gabriel Valley, as there are no north-south freeways in the heavily populated area between the Golden State and San Gabriel River freeways.
Currently, Caltrans is researching the possibility of using advanced tunneling technologies to build the Long Beach Freeway under South Pasadena without disturbing the residential neighborhoods on the surface; such technologies have been used to build freeways through similarly sensitive cities like Versailles in France. South Pasadena's government has grudgingly conceded that it may assent to such a project. However, it is unclear whether this option would be financially feasible, owing to the state budget crisis of the early 21st century. Even if funds were available, the vulnerability of such an ambitious structure to earthquakes and terrorism might preclude its construction.
Communities along the Long Beach Freeway include:
- Long Beach
- South Gate
- Bell Gardens
- East Los Angeles
- Monterey Park
- El Sereno
Freeways intersected by the Long Beach Freeway include:
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