Purpose

To consolidate, disseminate, and gather information concerning the 710 expansion into our San Rafael neighborhood and into our surrounding neighborhoods. If you have an item that you would like posted on this blog, please e-mail the item to Peggy Drouet at pdrouet@earthlink.net

Friday, February 14, 2014

Metro enforcement cuts Orange Line fare evasion

 http://thesource.metro.net/2014/02/14/metro-enforcement-cuts-orange-line-fare-evasion/

 By Paul Gonzales, February 14, 2014


Fare evasion has fallen sharply on the Orange Line since December and beefed up enforcement is credited with a 45 percent increase in the number of riders who pay fares and tap their TAP cards at validators before boarding the bus, according to Metro officials.

Metro conducted three fare enforcement audits on the Orange Line in December and February.
The first — on December 3  at the North Hollywood, Sherman Way and Van Nuys stations — found that 22 percent of Orange Line riders evaded fares by not having a valid TAP card or insufficient cash balance on the card. In addition, nine percent of passengers with an activated TAP card and a valid pass did not tap before entering, which is considered misuse of TAP and not fare evasion. As a result, 445 citations were issued that day.

A second audit was held on Dec. 17 at the North Hollywood, Canoga and Reseda stations. On that day, 16 percent of riders evaded fares and six percent of riders misused their TAP cards and 421 citations written.

A third audit was held February 11 at the North Hollywood, Van Nuys and Canoga stations. On that day, there was a seven percent rate of fare evasion and five percent misuse rate, resulting in 310 citations being issued.

The audits found that some passengers are still unclear about where and when to tap their fare cards. As a result, Metro is developing new posters and signs along with audio and electronic announcements explaining how to use TAP cards. A 30-second, instructional public service announcement about TAP cards is also being made and will be played on Transit TV on Metro buses.

There are about 26,000 boardings on the Orange Line on an average weekday. The Orange Line runs for 18 miles between North Hollywood, Warner Center and the Chatsworth Metrolink station.

'Jamzilla' 405 Freeway closure coming this weekend

http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=resources/traffic&id=9429981

February 14, 2014


Get ready for "Jamzilla" this weekend. It's an 80-hour modified closure of the 405 Freeway through the Sepulveda Pass.
Construction crews will be putting down new pavement and re-stripe lanes
.
The closure runs from Friday night to Tuesday morning on the northbound lanes of the Freeway, between Getty Center Drive and Ventura Boulevard. It consists of a partial day-time lane reduction, from five lanes to two, and a full night-time closure of all lanes.

Beginning at 7 p.m., ramps will begin closing on the 405 North between Getty Center and Ventura, with lanes closing at 10 p.m. The entire northbound freeway will be shut down during overnight hours on the following schedule:
  • 1 to 6 a.m. Saturday
  • 2 to 7 a.m. Sunday
  • midnight to 5 a.m. Monday
  • midnight to 5 a.m. Tuesday
The full freeway will reopen at 6 a.m. Tuesday.

According to Caltrans, 150,000 cars use the northbound lanes of the 405 daily. They're hoping to persuade two-thirds of those motorists to stay in their neighborhoods or use alternate routes.
"It can't be said enough. We need to reduce normal traffic in the area by 65 percent or face major delays," said Carrie Bowen, acting director of Caltrans District 7.

Throughout the closure, Caltrans will be monitoring the 405 Freeway 24/7 from its traffic management center in Los Angeles, where live cameras show real-time traffic. The center will double as a command post if necessary.

Emergency crews will be given unlimited access to the 405 Freeway with CHP escorts if a civilian emergency arises. Detour routes will be manned with traffic control officers.

Excitement, Confusion Over Proposed Changes to CEQA

http://la.streetsblog.org/2014/02/14/los-rule-change-confuses-planners/#more-90994

By Melanie Curry, February 14, 2014



 This famous demonstration of how much space is taken to move people via different modes has an important lesson for those thinking LOS is the best measure of transportation impacts.


With today’s deadline looming for comments on new rules governing the way the state analyzes transportation planning impacts, many transportation planners and engineers remain confused about what the new rules might mean while others join advocates in hoping that new rules will create better projects.

SB 743, signed into law last year, removes traffic Level of Service (LOS), a measure of traffic congestion, from the list of environmental impact metrics that have to be used under the California Environmental Quality Act when planning development and transportation projects. The Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) has to decide on a substitute for LOS that more broadly measures a project’s transportation impacts. Although SB 743 says LOS must be replaced in dense urban areas with robust transit access, OPR can also decide to apply that new metric everywhere in the state.

Focusing on LOS has severely hindered the expansion of bike lanes in California, including a lawsuit that delayed San Francisco’s bike plan for years because it might delay car traffic. Critics of LOS have long argued that using a metric that solely measures the movement of cars, rather than the movement of people, makes for an inefficient transportation system and requires costly measures to “mitigate” LOS impacts.

“CEQA rules were so backward that you had to analyze the environmental impact of replacing a ‘car’ lane with a bike lane but you could remove a bike lane to add a car lane with no analysis required whatsoever,” said Dave Snyder, executive director of the California Bicycle Coalition.

“It’s not just for bikes, either, but for any street improvement that involves reducing car capacity,” he added, “which is to say transit lanes, sidewalk bulbouts, or all manner of changes that make a place more livable, safer, and more prosperous, if a bit more congested with automobiles.”

Another example would be converting a mixed traffic lane to a bus-only lane. In the past couple of years, there has been a debate in Los Angeles over expanding the Wilshire Bus Only Lane. Studies showed a net increase in vehicle congestion in the remaining mixed traffic lanes with a major reduction in travel time for buses. More people ride the bus on Wilshire Boulevard than drive, but that didn’t stop opponents of the bus line from charging that the project was bad for commuters.


The Wilshire Bus Only Lane, image via L.A. County.
The Wilshire Bus Only Lane,

Rebecca Long, senior legislative analyst at the Bay Area’s Metropolitan Transportation Commission, says that by focusing on LOS, transportation analysis has often undermined environmental goals. “Congestion itself is inevitable,” she points out. “And it has some positive effects, like getting people to take transit” rather than driving, thus reducing per capita emissions.

Which is not to say removing the LOS standard for state environmental review is a universally popular idea.

Streetsblog reached out to planners throughout the state, in cities and counties, and found uncertainty and some confusion about what the new law and the proposed rules might mean for them.

Speaking off the record, because their departments have not yet determined their official responses to OPR’s request for comments, they expressed concerns about how jurisdictions will determine traffic impact fees — an important source of funds — if not through LOS, and about how transit planning can take into account impacts on vehicle traffic.

However, none of these uses of LOS are affected by SB 743 or the state’s proposed CEQA changes. Martin Engelmann, deputy executive director of Planning at the Contra Costa County Transportation Authority, pointed out that LOS is still required under the state’s congestion management laws and that many general plans and zoning regulations include LOS standards. “It’s not like LOS is going to disappear — it will just not be used for a threshold of significance under CEQA.”

Englemann dismissed the widely expressed concern that focusing on LOS necessarily leads to wider, faster roads. “In many places, it’s not even possible to widen roads,” he said, “so mitigations might include shuttle buses or multimodal efforts or any number of other things.”

Another objection that some planners have to requiring LOS analysis is that the process is cumbersome and often produces inaccurate results. Reams of data are required by LOS models, and the process includes many steps to reach a precise number. While the number may be precise, the assumptions in the underlying data are allowed to have a very high error rate.
Some planners think that measuring vehicle miles traveled (VMT) would be m
uch simpler and produce a more accurate calculation, especially with recent technologies. Measuring VMT would be a more appropriate way to analyze bicycle improvement projects that reduce vehicle miles traveled “even if [they] increase automobile congestion,” according to the California Bicycle Coalition’s official response to the OPR.

Official comments are due by the end of today to: guidelines@ceres.ca.gov

Here’s the presentation from Thursday’s community meeting in Beverly Hills about construction of the Wilshire/La Cienega station for Purple Line Extension

http://thesource.metro.net/2014/02/14/heres-the-presentation-from-thursdays-community-meeting-in-beverly-hills-about-construction-of-the-wilshirela-cienega-station-for-purple-line-extension/

By Steve Hymon, February 14, 2014

Metro held two community meetings on Thursday in Beverly Hills to explain upcoming work on the first phase of the Purple Line Extension that will run for 3.9 miles between the Wilshire/Western station and the new Wilshire/La Cienega station.

The Beverly Hills Courier covered the meetings but their article did not fully or correctly explain the work that will take place.

•The Courier reported that “The Metro reps said that, first, Metro will dig a massive open hole for the La Cienega station. That hole will remain open for at least seven years, covered by steel plates. The station will be built under the plates then covered over.”

That’s not exactly right and to clarify: Surface construction on the Purple Line Extension will occur at the three new station sites along Wilshire Boulevard — at La Brea, Fairfax and La Cienega, as well as at Western in order to connect the extension to the existing Purple Line.

In between these locations, long stretches of Wilshire will be undisturbed as tunneling takes place completely below ground. As shown in the presentation posted above and the slide below, Wilshire will remain open for motorists throughout most of the construction.
presenation2
However, there will be lane closures on Wilshire for two activities — the utility relocation that is occurring now and future pile installation.

During utility relocation, two lanes of traffic will be maintained during the daytime with possible full or partial closures of Wilshire at night at the station locations.

During pile installation, work will take place behind a K-rail with two lanes of traffic open in each direction. For both activities, sidewalks and driveways will remain open.

In order to install the decking, sections of Wilshire will be closed over a series of weekends, with the closures beginning late Friday night and reopening before the Monday morning rush hour — at which time the street will return to full use.

Once the decking is complete, station construction continues below ground and beneath the concrete decking with access to the underground station box provided from construction staging sites that are located off to the side of Wilshire. This work will take place for approximately five years while Wilshire Boulevard remains fully open to traffic. This is not different than Red Line construction in Hollywood, when Hollywood Boulevard remained fully open while the Hollywood/Highland station was built — as shown in this page from the meeting presentation:
BH Community presentation 2014-2-13 FINAL
•The Courier’s story made two other errors. In response to questions from the audience and in conversations with the reporter, Kasey Shuda — the Construction Relations Manager for the project — explained that Metro would reimburse the city of Beverly Hills for any lost parking meter revenue during the time that work crews are blocking parking spaces on the street. She never spoke about parking garages, as the Courier reported.

Also, a question about the water table was answered by Scott McConnell, the project’s Director of Construction Management. He explained that Metro employs various techniques to keep water out of the tunnels and stations including gaskets, tunnel liners and pumps. Any water removed is treated if necessary and then released into the sewer or storm drain depending on what is appropriate. Metro staff also explained that the underground subway will not raise the water table in the area.

Aside from media stories, it’s important to understand why these meetings were held in addition to the regular community outreach meetings that Metro hosts for the project, most recently on Jan. 29.
Metro has a “Master Cooperative Agreement” with the city of Los Angeles that governs how Metro and the city will work together during subway construction, including each parties’ responsibilities, timelines and how Metro will reimburse the city for its time. Metro is hoping to also get such an agreement with Beverly Hills.

The meetings held Thursday were done at the request of the Beverly Hills City Council when they deferred action in January on two pending permits from Metro. The agency believes that an agreement with Beverly Hills will help the agency deliver the project as promised and simplify the permit approval process so that Metro, the city and area residents and businesses will know what to expect while construction proceeds.
permits


Bus Wi-Fi system considerations for transit agencies

http://www.metro-magazine.com/blog/transit-dispatches/story/2014/02/bus-wi-fi-system-considerations-for-transit-agencies.aspx?ref=Transit-Dispatches-NEW-20140214&utm_campaign=Transit-Dispatches-NEW-20140214&utm_campaign=Transit-Dispatches-NEW-20140214&utm_source=Email&utm_medium=Enewsletter

February 13, 2014

Finding Wi-Fi access on a moving vehicle is still a thrill for many transit riders. But with dozens of municipal public transportation systems across the country offering on-the-go Internet access — for example, Boston Oakland, Calif. — it’s clear the future of transportation in this country involves increasing Internet connectivity. Those transit agencies that successfully install dependable Wi-Fi access, such as Calif.-based Santa Clara VTA — often see ridership increases, so operators are eager for mobile Internet solutions.

In this, the first of two blogs on Wi-Fi for public transportation agencies, I examine why a higher end solution is the wiser choice. The complexity of fleet-wide Wi-Fi deployment requires expert engineering. Bus companies opting for too-basic Wi-Fi systems, such as those intended for RV use, are often frustrated by recurrent and costly connectivity failure.

In part two of this series, we explore advantages and capabilities of advanced transit Wi-Fi systems. Below, I have outlined the major differences between basic/low-grade Wi-Fi systems and high-end solutions designed specifically for train and bus systems.

Overall, more advanced train and bus Wi-Fi systems are hardened—they’re designed for rough road conditions. High-end solutions also offer machine-to-machine connectivity with a robust power range and enough bandwidth to accommodate multiple users. Low-end Wi-Fi systems aren’t designed for commercial use, so they tend to present performance problems, as expanded on below.
Common problems with installing basic Wi-Fi systems on commercial buses:
  • Simultaneous user limitations. Generic systems are designed to sustain five or 10 users at once, when a commercial bus may carry 60 people or more. A single rider may connect three devices, thus utilizing most available channels. It’s irritating for agency and rider alike when bus Wi-Fi access is severely limited.
  • Power failures. If a system isn’t designed for moving vehicles, it will likely suffer frequent power spikes, which tend to require system resetting. Beyond the hassle of constantly finagling with too-basic Wi-Fi equipment is the fact that, for union or policy reasons, many bus drivers are not allowed to touch electric components. So no matter how riders cajole, drivers can’t reset the Wi-Fi on the road. How frustrating to have Wi-Fi disabled for the entire trip, until the bus can be adjusted by an authorized mechanic.
  • Poor Antenna Connections. Typically, mobile Wi-Fi systems see the best performance with roof-mounted antennas. However, most low-end mobile Wi-Fi systems do not accommodate roof mounting, and those that do, require a tricky USB card connection that tends to disconnect frequently. When the antenna connection wiggles loose, reception is lost for the vehicle, exasperating riders.
  • Limited Carrier Accessibility. Lower-end Wi-Fi configurations are single-carrier, single-SIM-card systems. Crossing a country line or moving into a certain carrier’s dead zone could interrupt access. Underdeveloped technology limits operational flexibility—there’s no way to switch to a different carrier for increased range.
  • No Fleet-wide Software. Without a single system overseeing performance, it’s very difficult to implement effective Wi-Fi access. Centralized software is a must-have for managers overseeing dozens of vehicles simultaneously. Basic systems can’t provide a bird’s eye view of Wi-Fi operation. Nor can they provide real-time information on the GPS location of each vehicle.
Beyond these technical considerations, transit agencies could consider the following financial concern: Without centralized Wi-Fi system coordination, there’s no way to deliver advertisements to riders. Devicescape has found the majority — 68% — of passengers are willing to watch ads in exchange for complimentary Wi-Fi access. Advertising can partially or totally offset transit agencies’ Wi-Fi costs. Higher-end solutions come complete with built-in, advertisement-based revenue systems.

Stay tuned for our next post, on the sophisticated capabilities of advanced train and bus Wi-Fi systems.

Brief History of the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach

 http://www.kcet.org/socal/departures/710-corridor/brief-history-of-the-ports-of-los-angeles-and-long-beach.html

 By Gilbert Estrada, Ph.D., January 24, 2014



00033117.jpg

 ________________________________________________________________________________
Comments on Facebook about this article:

"Reading the article was a real eye opener for me. When MetroTrans say that the 710 expansion or extension is not about port traffic, they are either severely misinformed or just downright liars. The part one of this series discusses the history of the two ports (LA and Long Beach) which started in the 19 century."

"Talk about synchronicity. I drove for the first time ever today, from the beginning of the 710, to the end in Long Beach. All I could think about was how terrible the air was inside my air conditioned car, this with all the windows closed. The smell was sickening at 11:00 in the morning. it was almost entirely trucks that I drove along side of. I couldn't stop thinking about the reality of the thousands of citizens who are forced to live along this poisonous corridor. It was like Beijing on a bad day.

I do not want to be forced to live like that. The air here, while not great, is way better than it was thirty four years ago when I moved to Pasadena. This hideous project would just become the "truck way" of the western world. Who among us would get cancer from this debacle? More than you might think. " 

_________________________________________________________________________________


The Ports of Los Angeles (POLA) and Long Beach (POLB) have helped transform the City of Angels into the largest business investment in America. As a Mecca for international trade, Southern California is part of a $8.9 trillion global exchange that also facilitates a contemporary U.S. trade deficit with China, the largest trade deficit in world history. The POLA and POLB contemporaneously facilitate 14.1 million containers annually, earning the title as the fifth largest seaport in the world in 2005. These harbors are considerably ahead of the nation's second place New York/New Jersey ports, the world's seventeenth largest.

Although the Ports of L.A. and Long Beach are the economic one-two punch for the region, it comes at a great cost. The ports are part of the region's mobile sources that account for 94% of our ambient carcinogenic risk. The dual ports are the single largest fixed source of air pollution in the entire L.A. basin, and before recent improvements (after years of community uproar), they emitted as much diesel exhaust as 16,000 trucks running for 24-hours straight.

When Native Californians encountered Portuguese Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo in 1542, the port was a desolate marsh, more closely resembling a scene from "Jurassic Park" than the industrial scenes from "Gone in 60 Seconds." It was also shallow -- very shallow. Yet, Southern California didn't offer many other seaport selections, and it remained relevant during the Mission period, Mexican Independence, and the U.S. Mexican War.

Although many assisted with the port's rise, it was Phineas Banning who earned the title as the "Father of the Los Angeles Harbor" during the 1850s and '60s. Not only did he found the harbor city of Wilmington, Banning helped build a transportation system using stagecoaches, moving recently-arrived people and goods throughout the Southland. He even helped put a post office and newspaper in the harbor area.

During the Civil War, Banning made 60 acres of harbor territory available to Union forces. With thousands of troops at the recently christened Fort Drum, the port's presence grew. By 1869, the Los Angeles and San Pedro Railroad transported goods from the harbor and central L.A. It was the first railroad in Southern California.

Projected site of the Port of Los Angeles, near Santa Monica, ca. 1893 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
Projected site of the Port of Los Angeles, near Santa Monica, ca. 1893 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
 
San Pedro, ca. 1903 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
San Pedro, ca. 1903 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
 
The "Great Free-Harbor Fight" of the 1890s is also among the most defining events in harbor history. In what became years of political turmoil over keeping the POLA at San Pedro in lieu of Santa Monica, the City of Los Angeles' lobbying efforts to secure San Pedro had one major obstacle: they did not own the harbor. Their solution was a sixteen-mile "shoestring district," connecting the harbor via a narrow piece of land less than a mile wide from Los Angeles, allowing for annexation of the harbor. With the prospect of joining the booming city, San Pedro and Wilmington relinquished control to Los Angeles in 1909.

The opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 was integral to the growth of our harbors. Los Angeles' strategic position on America's West Coast meant that its harbor would quickly become the main ports o' call for Pacific and Atlantic trade; when the Ports of Long Beach was founded in 1911, it only solidified the dual seaports.

The POLA and POLB also greatly benefited from World War II rearmament. The U.S. Naval Shipyard was stationed at the POLB and considered the most modern facility in the nation. During the war years, ship and aircraft production in the Southern California area was a 24-hour, around the clock operation that manufactured some 15 million tons of war products. The San Pedro area became an integral part of the $70 billion in Federal wartime monies contracted to the Southern California region, where, by 1943, nearly 500,000 were employed in ship, plane, and steel production.

In 1958, aboard the Hawaiian Merchant, the Matson Navigation Company handled the first shipment of 20 containers in Southern California, what the POLA later considered the beginning of the "containerized cargo revolution." Containers proved much easier than moving bulky packages, drastically increasing the amount of goods moved throughout the ports and local corridors like the 710 Freeway. Longshoremen teams of up to eighteen men, moving ten tons an hour, could be reduced to only five men that moved 450 tons per hour. By the early 1980s, this resulted in a ship turnaround from eight to ten days to a mere 36 hours. These dramatic results were achieved because once unloaded by cranes, containers were simply placed atop truck chassis or trains, and motored to their destination. The POLA handled 7,000 containers by 1959; the POLB joined the container revolution a few years later.

Multiple trade agreements made sure the port was heavily utilized. The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade initiated an international trade proliferation from $365 billion to $64 trillion by the year 2000 as tons of international cargo moved through the ports. In 1962 Los Angeles Mayor Sam Yorty headed a successful East-Asian trade mission that lead to additional trade agreements. By the mid 1970s, Los Angeles port authorities signed trade provisions with Hong Kong, Japan, and Taiwanese-based Evergreen Line Company. By 1981, China Ocean Shipping Co. inaugurated its first port of call in Long Beach.

Ten merchant ships, valued at $35,000,000, in one small area of the port in 1932 | Los Angeles Public Library
Ten merchant ships, valued at $35,000,000, in one small area of the port in 1932 | Los Angeles Public Library
 
Aerial view of Port of Los Angeles Warehouse No. 1 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
Aerial view of Port of Los Angeles Warehouse No. 1 | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
 
The economic impacts were phenomenal, as were the ports' expansion efforts. From 1953-54, some 26.5 million tons moved through POLA facilities. In 1960, POLA launched a five-year, $37 million development project, to construct fifteen berths and five new cargo terminals; a second $14 million bond was issued two years later. POLA was the largest man-made harbor on earth and moved 24.5 million shipping tons in 1960. By 1966, more investment dollars were spent on the ports since World War II than any other in the nation, with the exception of New York.

Yet, port authorities presented a paradigm that encouraged more expansions. Even previously dredged sections needed to be made deeper. During the 1970s, POLA began a $36 million process that eventually dredged the port ten additional feet, and POLB began construction on what was the world's largest landfill expansion.

While the port's expansions efforts are prolific, the impact to the community has been less announced. The litany of "improvements" since the days of Banning have significant and permanent impacts to sea life and harbor residents, who essentially subsidize the ports with their health. If the boost to the economy is genuine, then so are the negative impacts.

For starters, the ports were once home to large scale fishing and packing industry, including Star-Kist Foods, the world's largest fish cannery. Port authorities were pleased with the millions in revenue the company earned, and residents were pleased with union paying jobs that went mostly to women of color. By 1929, some 75% of all California fish were canned in Los Angeles, generating tons of fish meals, oils, and other economic benefits. Thousands were employed by a hugely successful industry, until overfishing and port-related industrial pollution and expansion helped stifle aquatic life. Unions were also destroyed.

Port expansions also lead to a significant loss of community acreage for parks, schools, and important community facilities. Although some of that has been replaced (sometimes through lawsuit dollars), both ports equal some 10,500 acres, and plans continue for their expansion. Last year, POLB docked the world's largest container vessel, which can hold 12,500 containers and is as tall as the Empire State Building (first generation tankers held a mere 1,700). With fear of the Panama Canal taking away local pay checks, expansion efforts have boiled into a "beat the canal" campaign that wants to expedite environmental reviews in an effort to expand harbor territory further.

White Star Cannery at Terminal Island in the L.A. Harbor area | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
White Star Cannery at Terminal Island in the L.A. Harbor area | Security Pacific National Bank Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
 
The S. S. Monterey, a Matson Line ship that went to Hawaii, Samoa and Australia, at Berth 156, ca. 1937 | Herman J. Schultheis Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
The S. S. Monterey, a Matson Line ship that went to Hawaii, Samoa and Australia, at Berth 156, ca. 1937 | Herman J. Schultheis Collection, Los Angeles Public Library
 
For decades, the most talked-about impact of the ports to the community has been health risks, specifically diesel exhaust. During a proposed 1970s LASH terminal, studies projected the handling of 320,000 tons per year with 100% of the cargo transported by 300,000 annual diesel truck
movements. Even though diesel was known to be harmful (listed as a toxic air contaminant in 1998), with over 40 chemicals known to cause cancer, somehow environmental records predicted no adverse effects from 300,000 truck movements. Other environmental reports had the same sunny outlook and as a whole read: decades of dramatic increases in container and diesel trucks would have no negative cumulative impacts on community health.

In fact, ongoing expansion of the ports became so profuse that multiple agencies had significant concerns. The precursor to the Air Quality Management District became involved in POLB's expansions, and used language to describe their environmental review process as "misleading," "inaccurate," and critiqued one updated environmental report as "hardly an improvement" over a previous draft. Caltrans and the California Air Resources Board were also critical of port expansions.

The ports are also home to a diverse collection of industrial sites. Oil refineries, recycling centers, and industrial warehousing also call the harbor home. POLA was also home to several chemical companies, including one company that registered 53,193 tons of chemicals and "discharged" 42,963 tons of chemicals during the 1960-61 fiscal year.

The ports have also been host to significant accidents that pose dangers to workers and community members. In 1944, a massive explosion at POLA'S Berth 233 "brought into flaming reality... the many potential hazards of Los Angeles' busy wartime harbor," read the Fire Department's report. The explosion ignited local trucks, cars, and structures, killing about eleven persons. The 1947 explosion of the S.S. Markay enacted a force so powerful that the blast jolted buildings several miles away, damaging several buildings. Damages were approximately $2.5 million. An additional explosion of the Tanker Sansinena occurred in 1976, killing nine.

The dual ports not only service Southern California, but the entire country. They are important. So are the transportation corridors that service it, including the 710 Long Beach Freeway, the subject of our next story.

Read at:  http://www.kcet.org/socal/departures/710-corridor/history-of-the-710-freeway.html