Starting at midnight Friday, July 15th, 10 miles of the San Diego Interstate 405 Freeway will be closed. Rightfully named Carmageddon, the phenomenon will cloud Southern California with the closure of a portion of the most clogged freeway system in the city, all the way from the Hollywood Hills to the 10 Santa Monica Freeway.
Knowing the doomsday-like phenomenon will not be a simple event, even local officials gave in to calling it Carmageddon.
Caltran workers will work on demolishing a bridge during Carmageddon, and the freeway portion is expected to reopen on Monday, July 18.
More than 200,000 cars use that highway each weekend, which could lead to massive delays. However, a full shutdown is necessary to replace the 50-year-old Mulholland Bridge as a part of construction efforts of the planned $1 billion project to widen the highway and add additional carpool lanes. It is expected to be done in 2013.
In the Carmageddon weekend, thousands of doctors and nurses will sleep in hospitals. According to the Contra Costa Times, the UCLA Health System placed advanced orders for medical supplies and food, even preparing 5,200 box lunches for staff. Three helicopter companies are on standby to transport patients and human organs in the event of emergency operations.
Travellors flying out of LAX are urged to prepare for a tough drive to the airport, and warned by the airport that should they miss their flight due to heavy traffic, re-booking tickets may be a problem due to peak travel season.
Los Angeles World Airports spokesperson Nancy Castles advised Ride the rails to Union Station and catch our FlyAway [shuttle] to LAX, or ride the Green Line directly into LAX, or, if they really must drive, to really plan for several hours in advance of that.
Prime Time Shuttle will offer special Carmageddon deals', as their drivers are familiar with alternate routes around the 405 closure.
Free rides on the subway and certain bus lines are offered by transit officials. While metro buses and trains will not run later than usual, enhanced service on many lines is provided throughout the weekend.
A helicopter company is advertising $150 rides to zip people to downtown and Los Angeles International Airport, said the Times. JetBlue offers 30-minute Over the 405 flights between Long Beach Airport and Bob Hope Airport in Burbank, costing $4 to $5, and the offer was sold out on Wednesday.
The countdown clock downloadable from metro.net has gone quite viral. The end of the countdown will morph into the live stream of the world's largest traffic jam.