Elected officials from Pasadena, South Pasadena, La Canada, and Glendale along with members of the No 710 Action Committee will be protesting Saturday morning in Pasadena the 710 Freeway tunnel proposal. The event will include a press conference on the potential dangers of completing the freeway with a tunnel and the impact of a July 13 accident on the 5 and 2 freeways during which an oil tanker carrying 8,500 gallons of gasoline overturned and caught fire inside a small tunnel interchange, causing significant structural damage.
"The press conference aims to educate the public and alert state agencies to the high risks associated with a completed tunnel and the exorbitant costs of the SR-710 toll tunnel project," the No 710 Action Committee wrote Thursday in a press release.
According to Joanne Nuckols, spokesperson for the No 710 Action Committee, the event has been planned for some time and is not a response to Alhambra's pro-tunnel rally last Wednesday. “There are many purposes to this press conference, but it was the tunnel accident that made us coalesce to put this event together,” Nuckols said.
Alhambra hosted "710 Day" on July 10 to declare its support for the 710 tunnel alternative. Although an environmental study of the extension alternatives is not due until Spring 2014, council members from Alhambra, Rosemead, San Marino, San Gabriel, and Monterey Park believe that the tunnel is the safest and most environmentally friendly option for completing the 710.
A tunnel is one of five options the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is considering. Still on the list are a light-rail line, rapid bus route, ride sharing and transit services, and "no-build" alternatives.
The No 710 Action Committee's press conference is scheduled to begin at 8:45 a.m. at Blair High School, 1201 S. Marengo Ave., Pasadena, Calif., 91106. It will be followed by Metro's 710 information session in the school's cafeteria.