Local

Construction on the northbound 710 Freeway still on schedule

File: I-710/60 freeway interchange in Los Angeles.
File: I-710/60 freeway interchange in Los Angeles.
Joe Wolf via Flickr

This weekend marks the third 54-hour closure for Caltrans' work on a mile and half of road along the northbound 701 freeway that started last month. 

All northbound lanes of the 710 from Olympic Boulevard — just past the 5 — to the 60 will be shut down, as part of the $120 million ongoing pavement replacement project. Each closure will last from 10 p.m. Friday to Monday at 4 a.m.

Luckily for motorists, lanes will be reopened for upcoming holiday weekends, including Oct. 28-31, Nov. 11-14 and Nov. 25-28. The work is expected to wrap up after the closure on Dec. 16-19, but that could change depending on the weather, Caltrans spokesman Michael Comeaux told KPCC. 

The department's Lauren Wonder told KPCC last weekend crews had to shut down a chunk of the southbound side of the freeway for an emergency repair project just over Olympic Boulevard.

Crews will continue this work during Halloween weekend, but will not create any delays for the main road construction.

As of now, the December completion date still stands, she said. 

The shutdowns were expected to create significant backups if folks don't plan ahead for alternate routes, but Wonder said most motorists have been paying attention and planning for alternate routes so far. 

"We’ve actually had a good traffic, given the fact that we do have that segment of the freeway shut down. People are paying attention, avoiding the area, using the alternate routes and avoiding East L.A.,” she said.   

Until the project is finished, the same recommended detours still apply. For drivers traveling north on the 710 from the Long Beach area, the department recommends exiting on the 91 or 105, if they’re traveling east, to connect to the 605 freeway. If going west, use the 405, 91 or 105 freeways and use the 110 to continue north. 

The real choke point will be on the 710, north of the 105 freeway — folks who travel any farther than that are advised to exit once they get to the 5. Detour signs have been posted, but if drivers make it past the 5, they'll have no choice but to exit on Olympic Boulevard, make a right on Eastern Avenue up to 3rd Street to get back on the 60 or 710. 

“We’re asking people to avoid those city streets because a large number of cars using that city street detour will cause congestion and very long delays. There could be gridlock," he said. The delays, he added, could possibly be for hours.