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Plans To Rename Stretch Of L.A. Freeway For Obama Move Forward

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(Base photo via Wikimedia Commons, President Obama photo via Twitter)
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On Monday, the California State Senate voted near unanimously (official count: 35-to-1) to rename a section of the 134 Freeway for former President Obama.

The proposal, which was introduced by State Senator Anthony Portantino back in December, would rename the stretch of the 134 between Interstate 210 in Pasadena and State Route 2 in Glendale for America's 44th president. The stretch of freeway in question passes Eagle Rock, where Obama president attended Occidental College from 1979 to 1981 (he transferred to Columbia in 1981). Having sailed through the Senate, the proposal still has to be approved by the State Assembly before it becomes official.

The idea for an Obama freeway was actually brought to Portantino by community activists, who came up with it during a ceremony held last December during which the city of Pasadena commemorated Obama's college apartment with a plaque. "If someone comes up with a good idea, I'm going to run with it," Portantino told the L.A. Times at the time.

Here in Southern California, where car culture is a way of life, there are few honors grander than being granted one's very own stretch of freeway. There is already a section of State Route 118 in Simi Valley named for former President Ronald Reagan, and a portion of Route 90 in Yorba Linda named in honor of former President Richard Nixon.