A 2 1/2-mile section of the Hollywood (101) Freeway was completely closed in downtown Los Angeles Saturday morning to allow crews to construct two arches for the replacement Sixth Street Viaduct.
The closure began at 10 p.m. Friday and was scheduled to end at 5 a.m. Monday. All lanes in both directions of the freeway will be closed from the San Bernardino (10) Freeway in the north to the Santa Monica (10) Freeway/Santa Ana (5) Freeway interchange with the 101 in the south. Drivers going west on the Pomona (60) Freeway out of Pomona will not be able to get onto the 101.
Crews will construct two new arches above the freeway as part of a $588 million Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project, which is the largest bridge project in L.A. history.
The previous Sixth Street Viaduct, which was built in 1932 and connected Boyle Heights with downtown L.A., was a Los Angeles landmark for its appearances in films such as “Grease,” “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” and dozens more. The bridge needed to be replaced due to seismic vulnerability and deterioration caused by a chemical reaction in the concrete. On Feb. 5, 2016, the Bureau of Engineering began demolition work.
The bridge is being replaced with a design by L.A. architect Michael Maltzan and will resemble a “Ribbon of Light” with 10 sets of arches that light up at night. Former Councilman Jose Huizar, who represented the district, told City News Service in 2016 that the new bridge design would make it “a destination point, not only a means to get over the river.”
Once the new viaduct is completed in the summer of 2022, the Bureau of Engineering plans to create a 12-acre park underneath the bridge to provide access to the L.A. River, public art, recreational programming and more.
The Los Angeles Bureau of Engineering partnered with contractors Skanska-Stacy & Witbeck, which is leading construction for the viaduct replacement project. Each arch is 10 feet wide and spans about 300 feet. Each one will take about 65 trucks of concrete to create.
During the last 14 hours of the weekend closure, Caltrans will conduct maintenance in the area, including removing graffiti and weeds, repairing guard rails and signs, repairing pavement and filling potholes. A contractor will also repair broken slabs in the freeway’s southbound lanes.
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