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Residents Wish Metro Would Take a Detour on 2 Fwy Plans

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Every freeway ends somewhere, and while the end of the 2 Freeway isn't going to change, how it ends will. However, the proposed plan to handle the reconstruction project has some detractors in Echo Park, where the 2 meets the road, according to Echo Park Patch.

The high speed of drivers coming off the 2 South onto Glendale Boulevard during non-peak hours, as well as the choke of rush hour traffic between the 2's end and connected routes like the 101 and Alvarado Street, have forced Metro, CalTrans and LA DOT to team up to find a solution.

Metro presented their plan, following an initial presentation of five alternatives, in late November, however some are not please with what was not part of the reconstruction: "While it may streamline traffic, the finalized design does little to encourage alternative modes of transportation, such as biking or public transit. Nor does it maximize potential for open space, opponents say."

When State Route 2 was first built, it was Echo Park residents who paved the way to prevent the freeway from running completely through the neighborhood; the 2 was initially conceived as connecting all the way to the 101-Hollywood Freeway. The Greater Echo Park Elysian Neighborhood Council got behind another of the five initial alternatives, but Metro didn't take their suggestion. One big stumbling block: Cost. Armed with $12 million in federal funds, the project as it stands will cost $18.4 million, and $3 million has already been spent on the planning stages. Plans that include open space and more consideration to non-motorists are budgeted at an additional $5 million.

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"Metro will again consult with community members as they and CalTrans move forward with construction sequencing and planning of traffic management during construction." Groundbreaking will likely happen in 2012, with completion slated for mid-2013.