On Thursday, June 23, the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements Project hosted a community meeting on the July 16-17 Mulholland Bridge Demolition and the resulting full closure of the I-405 in the Sepulveda Pass. Held at the Skirball Cultural Center near the Mulholland Bridge, the meeting drew over 250 attendees.

Answering questions from the audience were members of the Unified Command team, who will oversee transportation and public safety response to the 53-hour closure. Unified Command team members answering questions were Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese, Los Angeles Police Department; Michael Barbour, Metro; Captain Jeff Goodwin, California Highway Patrol; Aram Sahakian, City of Los Angeles Department of Transportation; Battalion Chief Jack Wise, Los Angeles Fire Department, and John Yang, Caltrans.

During an extensive question-and-answer session, audience members asked 45 questions, mostly focused on additional efforts the Unified Command team could offer to make travel easier during the July weekend and how emergency situations would be addressed. During the two-hour meeting, all emergency service agencies shared their plans and emphasized that the best way to cope with the expected congestion would be to avoid the area.

Numerous media attended the community meeting, including KCBS 2/KCAL 9, KNBC 4, KABC 7, KTTV Fox 11, Univision 34, KCET, Associated Press, Los Angeles Times, Patch.com, and National Public Radio, among others.


    Michael Barbour, Metro, explained that the Mulholland Bridge would be structurally sound during and after demolition of its south side. John Yang, Caltrans (left) stated that the fluid traffic environment on that weekend makes it difficult to offer useful detour advice.

    Deputy Chief Kirk Albanese, Los Angeles Police Department, emphasized that the top goal of the Unified Command was protecting the safety of the public during the 53-hour closure.

    Aram Sahakian, City of Los Angeles Department of Transportation, explained that having check points on Sepulveda Bl would quickly become choke points for traffic. He responded to an audience member’s request that check points be set up to ensure only local residents would be using Sepulveda Bl during the 53-hour closure.

    In answer to a local resident’s question, Battalion Chief Jack Wise, Los Angeles Fire Department explained that a variety of fire equipment would be deployed in local neighborhoods before the Mulholland Bridge demolition begins July 16.

Ned Racine

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