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CA 2/Glendale Freeway

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mrsman:

--- Quote from: nexus73 on February 08, 2020, 06:37:08 PM ---Sssh, don't tell anyone about the Glendale Freeway or it will wind up swamped with traffic! 

There was a time when most Southland freeways were drivable....

Rick

--- End quote ---

The 2 is a great freeway, especially if your ultimate destination is the central part of Downtown.  You can head down Glendale Blvd, which leads to 2nd street, that tunnels under much of Bunker Hill to get to 2nd and Hill.  Even the surface street portions of the route have a lot of grade separations, so you avoid long* traffic signals at Sunset, Beverly-1st, and the western downtown N-S streets excluding Figueroa (i.e. Flower, Hope, Grand, Olive).  The only major cross streets you faced were Alvarado, Temple, and Figueroa.

This was even better before the bike lanes were put up through the 2nd street tunnel.

*long signals, as there are still some signals for the interface with the ramps to Beverly-1st.

mrsman:

--- Quote from: Max Rockatansky on February 08, 2020, 06:54:41 PM ---
--- Quote from: Concrete Bob on February 08, 2020, 06:51:35 PM ---When I lived in Glendale back between January 1989 and March 1990, I used to take my old 1979 Mazda RX-7 for 80 MPH drives under the 134 ramps on up to the 210 regularly.  I also loved heading south on the 2 from the CHIPS point near 210 and seeing downtown Los Angeles peer out from the hills from my windshield.  That freeway is a total treasure !!  It's too bad it was never finished to at least the 101 in Hollywood. It would have been a blast to drive to Santa Monica.

--- End quote ---

That lack of connectivity to the Hollywood Freeway coupled with the unintuitive alignment for most commuters probably are the biggest factors keeping the Glendale Freeway relatively quiet.  Coupled with I-210 East from I-5 makes for some really scenic freeway driving.

--- End quote ---

Correct.  Given all the job growth in the Westside, if the Glendale Fwy were extended to the 101, and even more so if the Beverly Hills Fwy got built from there to the 405, this would likely be one of the busiest freeways in L.A.  It would provide a direct connection for the communities along 210 east of Pasadena to the Westside without passing through Downtown L.A.  Combining that with the current traffic from due north and northwest who use it to get into the center of Downtown L.A. by way of 2nd street (and avoiding the worst part of the 110's traffic) means that the drive would not be very pleasant.  The current commuters in La Canada and any of the 210 communities to the west of there are really lucky to have this.

There is a meme that I once saw illustrating the frustration of driving many L.A. area freeways, but when it mentioned the 2, it showed a picture of a very happy driver.  Fun stuff.

sparker:
The section of the CA 2/Glendale freeway between I-5 and CA 134 is part of the main all-freeway route between downtown L.A. and downtown Pasadena (and vice-versa, of course).  That section can get congested SB between 6am and 9am and NB 3pm-7pm -- but in my experience that cleared out quickly in the midday and evening off-peak hours -- one of the few freeways anywhere near the L.A. urban core that doesn't exhibit regular congestion at midday.  Perhaps its relative lack of commercial traffic is a contributing factor to its status as a free-flowing daytime facility. 

The Ghostbuster:
Does anyone think the Glendale Freeway should have been completed to the Hollywood Freeway? How about the long-proposed, never-will-be-built tunnel extension to the Antelope Valley Freeway?

sparker:

--- Quote from: The Ghostbuster on February 11, 2020, 05:01:39 PM ---Does anyone think the Glendale Freeway should have been completed to the Hollywood Freeway? How about the long-proposed, never-will-be-built tunnel extension to the Antelope Valley Freeway?

--- End quote ---

Even back in 1953 when it was constructed, the Hollywood Freeway featured the lane separation near the Melrose exit that was intended to accommodate LH ramps to and from the Glendale/Beverly Hills Freeway in a similar fashion to the present I-5/I-710 interchange in the City of Commerce (itself a holdover from '50's design standards).  The Glendale Freeway was completed to its present Glendale Blvd. terminus back in 1962; plans were active to extend it to US 101 as late as 1975, but those plans were put on hold when Adriana Gianturco became Caltrans' chief that year and drastically curtailed freeway planning and building statewide.  Eight years later, when administrations changed along with agency mission, the Echo Park/Silver Lake area through which CA 2 would have run had become quite gentrified, resulting in NIMBY opposition that was echoed within L.A. city government.  At that point the freeway extension was effectively dead.  But the simple truth is that even if that segment connecting to US 101 had been built, the regional politics had shifted enough that a western extension through the south part of Hollywood and into Beverly Hills would be D.O.A. as well.  Given the trajectory of the adopted Glendale Freeway alignment and the configuration of the originally planned 101/2 interchange, the traffic from CA 2 would have simply segued onto NB 101 -- which, unless immediately departing the Hollywood Freeway in its namesake neighborhood, would have been duplicative of other freeway service (i.e., CA 134).  Given all that, the final decision to scrap the freeway extension was hardly surprising.

The tunnel through the San Gabriels from La Canada to near Palmdale was originally contemplated when it was through that LAX would become overutilized to the point where capacity and congestion would render it functionally useless -- and it was thought that a massively expanded Palmdale Airport could take up the slack (all this was in the '70's and early '80's).  But of course the big extended curve through the canyons that is CA 14 was deemed inadequate to handle presumably huge levels of airport traffic -- and the only potential solution was a tunnel, with the 2/210 interchange being the most rational place to collect and disperse traffic (210/605 was considered as well, but inefficient for central L.A. traffic).  But like with most massive speculative projects of this type, nothing ever came of it; while overall LAX volume has increased, it never reached the level of "critical mass" that would render it perennially problematic.  And, frankly, very few L.A.-area residents relished the idea of schlepping out to the desert to get on a plane -- and a tunnel, likely with a significant toll attached -- would have been no one's idea of a pleasant first leg of a journey! 

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