The details on 710 Day, environmental impact still up for debate

City Council revealed on Monday evening plans for the 710 Day Celebration, an event on July 10 focusing on traffic, safety, and air quality in connection with closing the 710 Freeway gap. The Center for Disease Control, Sparkletts Water, Metro, Alhambra Hospital, and the Alhambra Police Department will have information booths. Activities also include carnival games, face paint, food trucks, and live entertainment from a Cars tribute band, who will be performing on a solar-powered stage in the Gateway Plaza on Fremont Avenue and Valley Boulevard.

Alhambra officials support a tunnel between the 710 and 210 freeways as a solution to congestion and safety and argue that the option would improve the environment. “For me, it’s very important because it’s an environmental issue. If you read the news, Southern California, Los Angeles specifically, is the number one city in the country, in the entire nation, if you rank it in terms of contamination,” Councilman Luis Ayala said during Monday night's City Council meeting. "This is something that is going to impact most likely our generation, if we see this through. Our kids now living near this freeway are the ones being impacted the most.”

Despite the eco-driven motif of 710 Day, resident Lola Armendariz questioned the safety of the event's location, stating that 50,000 vehicles pass through this intersection of Fremont Avenue and Valley Boulevard each day, according to the Alhambra Chamber of Commerce’s monthly publication Around Alhambra. She also said that the city's new residential projects have contributed to the number of cars passing through the city and the contamination Ayala mentioned.

“You talk about air quality and automobiles and congestion and so on and yet you have high density on Main Street with your projects," Armendariz said during the meeting. "You’ve got the Casita de Zen coming in, the Super A coming in, the Ratkovich project on Mission and Fremont and you have two large projects there. So you can’t be walking around with clean hands here because you are contributing to a lot of the traffic that’s going on out there on the streets."

8 thoughts on “The details on 710 Day, environmental impact still up for debate”

  1. Oh Alhambra, don’t let your City Council lead you to your doom. This project will be your worst nightmare with years of construction with far worse traffic than you have now. It is projected that 180,000 vehicles will use the tunnel but it is estimated that 1/3 of 710 users will jump off onto local streets to avoid paying the high toll. Guess where they will jump? Yep, still at Valley, in your neighborhood. There are far better ways to fix your traffic issues. Tell your Council that you don’t want the Tunnel Alternative(s).

  2. Whether you are in favor of completing the 710 freeway or not, this is probably the most inaccessable and dangerous spot to hold this event. Alhambra, what are you thinking?

  3. As someone who had to drive on surface streets to get around the “gap” for ten years, I was initially in favor of the tunnel idea. However, as more recent plans have emerged re:
    private investment, in turn requiring exorbitant tolls, and obvious emphasis on moving Port truck-traffic through to the North side of the basin, I have to say that as currently configured, I would not support it. The current plans would do nothing for Valley residents, requiring us to drive miles to access or exit the system, even if we were willing to pay the rumored huge tolls, which obviously could only be afforded by Commercial users !

  4. Metro’s own origin and destination studies show that only 23% of the vehicles exiting the 710 at Valley are through traffic and are trying to get to the 210 and points beyond. Since there are no intermediate exits/entrances to the tunnel, it will be of use only to through traffic. In addition, a toll aversion rate of 35% is predicted by Metro’s own financial consultants. This means that about 2/3 of the 23%, or about 16% of the traffic leaving the 710 at Valley will use the congestion-priced TOLL tunnel, leaving 84% of the vehicles exiting the 710 on the surface streets of Alhambra and surrounding communities. Yet, they continue to advocate spending something between $5 – $10 billion dollars on a project that will not improve air quality nor significantly improve congestion in Alhambra. Wake up, Alhambra!

  5. Forget about the generalities

    Go to Front Str. west end, Westmont north and south of Valley, and Charnwood and remind the residents that after dealing with the 710 traffic, TUNNEL construction in their backyards will last for five years and that if they plan to sell their houses they must notify the prospective buyers that construction for the F7X – Stealth Tunnel is coming to your backyards…

    The first part north of Valley will include piling and excavation for the tunnel access shaft – then delivery of the world’s largest tunnel machine then 3 yr of operating the TBM 24/7 with ventilation, lighting, noise and lots of concrete deliveries every day…

    So I hope Alhambra can celebrate the destruction of the Front/Westmont/Charmwood neighborhoods

    OBTW Don’t believe anything MTA/CTs/ACC says

    Tom

  6. What time is this party kicking off? Since it is a wednesday I imagine that many people will be working during the day…

  7. I’m mystified why the Alhambra City Council should be so much in support of the 710 tunnel as it will do little to improve congestion and air quality and most likely increase both. 1. the proposal is for a TOLL tunnel with no off ramps between the entrance and the exit so local traffic will have to continue to use local streets. 2. The I-710 from the ports will be expanded to 14 lanes-where is this traffic going to go? 3. Have you ever known of a freeway expansion that didn’t get worse in the long run? ex. 210 freeway extension to the 15. Waiting for the EIR results isn’t going to change anything, the books will be cooked. Alhambrans, please start asking the hard questions of METRO Board and your elected officials. Save yourself an eternity of traffic hell.

  8. Hope this intersection was not picked because it’s dangerous. That’s not very eco-friendly.

    Amen.

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