'Carmageddon' hits Los Angeles this weekend, and no one is thrilled about it.
A 10-mile stretch of the Interstate 405 Freeway, known locally as the 405, will be closed for construction from Friday night to Monday morning between two of the nation's busiest interchanges, Reuters reported.
The unprecedented 53-hour shutdown will allow crews to demolish a bridge as part of a $1 billion freeway-widening project.
Carmageddon is expected to delay motorists for hours on alternate routes, with ripple effects on about a dozen other major highways.
This is not a normal highway/road closure: to give one an idea of the magnitude of the traffic impact, Los Angeles plans to open its emergency operations center over the weekend.
On a typical day the 10-mile-long Carmageddon construction section handles about 500,000 vehicles - more volume than the roughly 300,000 vehicles that New York's George Washington Bridge handles on a typical day.
Further, Los Angeles' mayor is not using flowery language, regarding advice to residents.
It will be an absolute nightmare, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said at a press conference last month, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday. Avoid the area, or stay home. Go on vacation that weekend.
And, as one might sense, savvy companies and merchants are attempting to capitalize on the closure.
JetBlue Airways Corp. announced a Fly Over the 405 deal with a $4 one-way flight from Burbank to Long Beach, 40 miles away.
Transportation Analysis: In the metro-Los Angeles area, it's a lot of short-term pain, for a bigger gain. The weekend closoure of I-405 is a major headache, but the work must be done to increase capacity and add a high-occupancy vehicle lane. In the final analysis, the expansion project will be worth this weekend's travel delays. That's said, avoid 'the 405' this weekend.