In an effort to spread the word before the dreaded mid-July weekend approaches, county officials have posted signs on the 405 Freeway—as well as on freeways for hundreds of miles in each direction—that remind drivers of the plan to shut down part of the interstate for construction.
There's even a countdown clock online. As of Monday, there are 25 days until what's being called "carmageddon."
A 10-mile stretch of both the southbound and northbound lanes of the 405—between the Santa Monica and 101 freeways—are to be closed for 53 hours starting late on July 15. The 405 is expected to be reopened the morning of July 18.
Construction crews for the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project are to demolish half of the Mulholland Bridge in the Sepulveda Pass in order to build a new, wider bridge and a carpool lane on the freeway.
"They're calling this 'carmageddon,' and our objective is to prove all the predictors wrong and it doesn't need to be a 'carmageddon,' " said Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky.
Once the $1 billion project is complete, planners hope that commuters will have a 10-mile northbound carpool lane between Orange County and the San Fernando Valley.
But in the meantime, ramps along the 10-mile closure section, will begin to shut down as early as 7 p.m. on Friday, July 15, and the closure of freeway lanes will begin at 10 p.m. to ensure full freeway closure by midnight.
The specific freeway closure boundaries are:
- Northbound I-405: 10-mile closure between Interstate 10 and Highway 101.
- Southbound I-405: four-mile closure between Highway 101 and Getty Center Drive.