LOS ANGELES – A tunnel from Glendale to Palmdale, an expressway/tunnel connecting Riverside and Orange counties, and an extensive network of toll lanes connecting all major freeways in Southern California are among the proposals included in a $700 billion congestion-reduction plan released Tuesday by a nonprofit think tank.
The Reason Foundation proposal calls for variably priced toll lanes on all major highways and expressways, along with tolled overpasses and underpasses at bottleneck interchanges and a dramatic increase in bus rapid transit and express bus service.
It also outlines six “mega-projects” to close what it calls major gaps in the Southland transportation network. The projects are:
- A tunnel extending north from the Glendale (2) Freeway in Glendale, connecting with the Antelope Valley (14) Freeway south of Palmdale;
- A high-desert corridor expressway between the 14 Freeway in Palmdale and 15 Freeway in Victorville;
- A 710 Freeway extension tunnel connecting with the Foothill (210) Freeway in Pasadena;
- A downtown bypass tunnel extending the 2 Freeway south through Los Angeles to the Harbor (110) Freeway;
- An Irvine-Corona Freeway, including an expressway and tunnel between Riverside and Orange counties; and
- A “cross-mountain” expressway and tunnel between the Ventura (101) Freeway in the San Fernando Valley and Santa Monica (10) Freeway in Los Angeles.
“Southern California is facing crucial transportation decisions,” said Baruch Feigenbaum, author of the Reason Foundation report. “The region’s current long-range mobility plans admit that traffic congestion will only get worse, even after taxpayers spend over $600 billion on transportation. By focusing on reducing congestion and replacing expensive, ineffective rail proposals with cost-effective buses, Reason’s plan improves mobility for drivers and transit users. And it does so without tax increases.”
According to the report, the use of toll roads would generate about $362 billion to fully cover the costs of construction, while another $352 billion in “taxpayer resources” would be needed — compared to $606 billion for the existing Southern California Association of Governments’ Long Range Transportation Plan.
“As a result, our plan can be constructed with current resources, no tax increase is needed,” Feigenbaum wrote in an online summary of the report.
Mary Peters, former U.S. Secretary of Transportation, said Southern California drivers spend 80 hours sitting in stalled traffic each year, equating to two work weeks’ worth of lost productivity.
“The Reason Foundation report offers solid solutions to these challenges that do not require tax increases and would improve mobility options for all users in the region,” Peters said. “I commend the innovative solutions proposed in it.”
[View the Reason Foundation’s report here.]
10 comments for "Think tank proposes tunnel from Glendale to Palmdale"
Next they’ll tell us the moon is not made out of cheese!
KC Cowgirl says
Seriously Ridiculous! How on earth could the 2 to 14 segment alone even be built through the Angeles National Forest and now National Monument? This would cost billions of dollars for this segment alone. It would destroy at least several hundred existing homes and businesses.
The High Speed Rail segment proposed from Palmdale to Burbank would duplicate this entirely. This project has already spent hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars and isn’t even on the map yet. Why HSRA if this is the answer?
Who funds the billion dollar project in ADVANCE of any tolls collected ? What is the cost of the toll? What is the anticipated ridership?
I realize Palmdale and Lancaster would love it. The growth spurt would heighten even further the water shortage we already have in the Antelope Valley.
Tim Scott says
Tunneling from Glendale to Palmdale involves some pretty unstable strata. That seems like a major investment to have underground in southern California.
No tax increase? What do they think tolls are???
The toll is paid only by the people who use the road, like any pay-per-use product/service. If you don’t like, or don’t want, the product/service, you don’t have to use it and you don’t have to pay for it. It probably would be a cost savings to the commuters using that route when you factor fuel and wear & tear. It certainly would save time. I’d love to see this happen.
Tolls are money you pay to drive on a freeway that your tax dollars already paid for. Lol
Basically, poor people and others who can’t pay don’t get to use the king’s highway — they’re trapped in the fiefdom.
I’m sure there would be a stand setup on the street corner giving free toll passes for the unfortunate. Maybe they could have 2 stands setup, grab a phone, a toll pass and roll
Sign me up