February 22, 2017
South Pasadena has made it onto the front page of a leading national
business newspaper. The controversy about the proposed State Route-710
(SR-710) freeway north extension was featured on page 1 of the Wall
Street Journal (WSJ) Feb. 13.
Joanne Nuckols, a prominent South Pasadena anti-SR-710 activist, was
also quoted and pictured in the article. In the print article “Speed
Limits Await Infrastructure Spree,” writer David Harrison describes how
environmental reviews and lawsuits have delayed construction projects
The online version of the article is titled “Speed Limits on Trump’s
Infrastructure Drive: Federal Laws, Rare Species and Nimbys.”
“Environmental regulations and neighborhood opposition routinely bog
down projects,” its writer states, “and will likely constrain the
[Trump] administration’s plan to spend $1 trillion” on infrastructure.
Harrison includes as his first example the SR-710 north extension.
“The project remains under review,” he says, 60 years after it was
He describes major infrastructure work in Georgia, Maryland and other
states that had also been delayed. Former presidents George W. Bush and
Barack Obama faced such delays in completing needed improvements, the
writer says. He indicates President Donald Trump will likely encounter
the same obstacles.
“The article is a bit misleading,” said City Manager Sergio Gonzalez,
“stating that the SR-710 extension has been prevented due to a NIMBY
[not in my back yard] stance by our city.”
“The freeway extension above ground or as a tunnel would not do
anything to fix the congestion issues between the 10 and 210 freeways,”
he said. Nuckols said she was interviewed for the article in October
However, its publication was then postponed. She said a few weeks ago
Harrison contacted her for an update and to arrange for photographs.
Nuckols appears in a picture accompanying the article. She is shown
seated on the front porch of her 1909 Craftsman home. Prominently
featured next to her is an American flag, which hangs from her porch
roof. A small sign displaying the No-710 symbol can be seen on a window
Harrison describes Nuckols as a “board member of a local preservation
group [South Pasadena Preservation Foundation] who has been fighting
the road for 30 years.”
A second photograph shows the traffic-congested SR-710 near Alhambra. No other photos appear in the story.
Several paragraphs address the SR-710. The writer says opponents
reject the current tunnel proposal alternative. This, he says, is due to
concerns about weakening the ground under the city’s historic Craftsman
homes. He cites Nuckols as saying, “This is something that can never be
Harrison ends with a statement made by Barbara Messina, an Alhambra councilmember. She has long supported the project.
Referring to Nuckols, Messina is quoted as saying, “God forbid we had
people like that when we had our major infrastructure projects done. We
would never have gotten anything done.”
In response, Nuckols told the South Pasadena Review, “Thankfully we
had those environmental laws. That was what saved South Pasadena and was
the foundation of the legal case that we won.”