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Tag Archives: I-405

My experience on the new northbound 405 HOV lane

on July 17, 2011 in Los Angeles, California.

IMG_0604Among the personal qualities I find necessary to be in a vanpool is a mixture of patience, dedication, a sense of humor and the ability to “go with the flow.” For the 10 passengers in the UCLA Vanpool I co-drive from the West San Fernando Valley, I’ve appreciated those same qualities over the last four years while we’ve waited for the I-405 Sepulveda Pass Improvement Project to produce its long-promised #1 outcome—a new northbound carpool lane to close the 10-mile gap between the Santa Monica 10 freeway and Ventura 101 freeway.

The entire construction timeline, its delays and detours—all seemingly daily topics of conversation within our group--never dampened our enthusiasm to one day get to use “the carpool lane” (i.e. High Occupancy Vehicle or HOV lane) as part of our daily commute route home. When Mayor Garcetti announced during his State of the City address in April that the lane would open by the end of May, our commuting hearts beat a bit faster in anticipation.

On May 23, opening day, I bought cookies for everyone to celebrate our inaugural ride home. And we did.

In the early weeks of the new HOV lane, we’ve experienced an average daily time savings of five minutes off of a 50-minute commute home. That may not sound like much to some, but we’ll take it. I personally believe the true effect of this lane won’t be realized until this fall, when most of the remaining project deliverables are completed and ALL schools are back in session. Maybe we’ll double the time savings to 10 minutes by then? We do save at least that much each morning on the southbound side.

I did have a concern about safely “sliding over” all the way from the new carpool lane to those on the far right to transition onto the 101 Ventura Freeway--specifically when all the lanes are bumper to bumper and/or backed up ‘big time’ within the two-mile downhill grade north of Mulhollhand.

I was curious about the design standard distance that’s used to get from the HOV exits to transition roads and/or off-ramps. Specifically, does that design standard take into account traffic volumes ranging from nearly empty to bumper-to-bumper conditions?

Caltrans answered my concern: “…the HOV lane distance zoning for traffic exiting to US 101 from I-405 northbound exceeds standards. The length of the entrance into and exit from the HOV lane is 1,606 feet in this area compared to 1,320 feet which is the standard. The point of the opening of the HOV lane is 3,040 feet from the US 101 exit. The standards require 650 feet per lane that must be crossed. There are four lanes to cross, which yields a distance of 2,600 feet. The downward slope has been taken into consideration with these standards.”

All in all, the wait was worth it and we now get to pass by cars crawling in the mixed-flow lanes similar to what we do each weekday morning coming in on the southbound side. We get ‘wheely’ happy about that!

Jamzilla: Northbound 405 lane closures during Presidents’ Day weekend


Traffic on the I-405 Freeway and the surrounding area will be significantly impacted over Presidents' Day Weekend by a northbound freeway closure between Getty Center Drive and Ventura Boulevard. The traffic impacts will begin on the evening of Friday, February 14 and end on the morning of Tuesday, February 18. All northbound freeway lanes will be closed each night, while two northbound freeway lanes will remain open during the day.


Northbound I-405 Full Directional Closure:

  • 1 a.m. to 6 a.m., Saturday, February 15
  • 2 a.m. to 7 a.m., Sunday, February 16
  • Midnight to 5 a.m., Monday, February 17
  • Midnight to 5 a.m., Tuesday, February 18

Northbound I-405 Reduced to Two Lanes:

  • 6 a.m., Saturday, February 15 to 2 a.m. Sunday, February 16
  • 7 a.m. to 11:59 p.m., Sunday, February 16
  • 5 a.m. to 11:59 p.m., Monday, February 17

The freeway will open to full capacity at 6 a.m., on Tuesday, February 18.

It is recommended that you avoid I-405 and the Westwood area if possible during this weekend. If you must come to campus, please expect delays and consider alternate routes. Motorists coming to UCLA from the south should consider utilizing the Santa Monica Freeway and exit at either Overland (from the east) or Bundy (from the west) and take surface streets to the campus. For those leaving campus and heading north, canyon roads, such as Beverly Glen and Coldwater Canyon, may provide better access to the San Fernando Valley.

While no lane closure are planned for southbound I-405, it is possible that some delays may occur in this direction. These are suggested alternate routes only and actual traffic conditions are subject to change at any time. To help you select the route that will present the least amount of delay and congestion, we urge you to log onto for real-time freeway conditions and for real-time City of Los Angeles surface street conditions. A few extra minutes checking these sites could save you a great deal of time.

Northbound I-405 Construction This Weekend: Lane Reductions During Day and Full Closures at Night

In order to accommodate the paving of the freeway’s new high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lane, the northbound I-405 between Montana Avenue and Getty Center Drive will be reduced from five lanes to two lanes throughout this weekend (March 1-4).

The lane reduction will be in place by midnight on Friday night and all freeway lanes will reopen no later than 5am on Monday morning. In addition to the northbound lane reductions, the following northbound ramps will be closed from 10pm on Friday until 5am on Monday:

  • Montana off-ramp
  • Sunset on-ramp
  • Moraga on and off-ramps
  • Getty on-ramp

Motorists coming to UCLA from the south via I-405 will be able to exit the freeway at either Wilshire or Sunset. Motorists departing UCLA to the north via the freeway are advised to use the Wilshire on-ramp.

In addition, the northbound I-405 will be fully closed during the following times:

  • Saturday, March 2: 1am-6am
  • Sunday, March 3: 2am-7am
  • Monday, March 4: 12am-5am

Sepulveda Boulevard will remain open throughout the weekend as an alternative to northbound I-405. Southbound I-405 lanes and ramps will not be closed during this time.

Please visit for additional information.

Carmageddon II begins TONIGHT at 7 p.m. [VIDEO]

You've been hearing about it for months, and now it's finally here: The 405 freeway will shut down tonight starting at 7 p.m. between the 101 and the 10.

This year's 53-hour freeway shutdown requires 30% more work to be completed than last year's Carmageddon. If all goes according to plan, the 405 should reopen by 5 a.m. on Monday morning. Everyone can help the Mulholland Bridge demolition go as smoothly as possible by keeping cars off the road and being safe (the California Highway Patrol says there will be zero tolerance for pranksters).

According to Curbed LA, County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky said, "If we have the public's cooperation again, this weekend should be a repeat of last summer. However, if motorists are complacent and revert to normal car usage, we could easily have the traffic nightmare we have all been trying to avoid."

Make sure to check your local news reports and traffic updates before you head out on the road Monday morning. You can get live updates at Metro's website or via Twitter.

Plan ahead, avoid the area, or eat, shop and play locally.

Be safe during Carmageddon II: Bicyclists, drivers, skateboarders, pedestrians steer clear

Carmageddon II starts this Friday evening! The 405 will shut down between the 10 and the 101 from 7 p.m. on Friday to 5 a.m. on Monday morning.

Be safe and avoid the area during the closure. Your actions affect not only yourself, but also the many construction workers and law enforcement officials who will be hard at work throughout the weekend. Assistant Chief Calvin Aubrey of the California Highway Patrol says,

Drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, skateboarders, take note: if you access the closed section of the 405, you will be breaking the law and we will take appropriate action. Don't distract law enforcement officers from their task of keeping our region safe and mobile despite the closure.

And remember, this second 405 closure is "Carmageddon on steroids." This year, 30% more construction needs to be completed in the same time frame as last year's 405 closure. Everyone needs to do their part to ensure the shutdown of one of the world's busiest freeways goes as smoothly as possible. Plan ahead, avoid the area, or eat, shop and play locally.