Click to enlarge.


Posted: December 22, 2022
Newberry Springs Community Alliance
by Ted Stimpfel

    This week, I drove to L.A. to attend a friend's swearing-in ceremony.  While leaving the downtown area on the 101 southbound, I exited to drive to the new 6th Street Viaduct.

    Having seen the structure many times in televised news reports, I admit to having felt mediocre about the bridge's design.  The flowing ribbon of repeated arches has looked too many, too heavy and bulky.  Simply too dominant and overpowering.

    Now seeing it live from a distance as it crosses the Los Angeles River channel and adjacent rail tracks, it truly does stand out as a massive dominant structure.  But the design does work.

    With mid-day traffic heavy in the area, and due to the scenes that I have seen in the media, I expected the bridge to be congested.  So when entering the bridge from the east side, I was astounded to find the bridge nearly empty.

    I have crossed most of California's major bridges, but the 6th Street Viaduct was like crossing within a piece of artwork.

    The roadbed's curvature and flowing arches all work together to make a fun traveling experience.  The bridge's length also seemed much longer than I remember the previous bridge.

    Having crossed the bridge, I did a U-turn and again crossed it.  The only other vehicle going in my direction was a motorcyclist who passed me doing a one-wheelie across the entire length of the bridge's span.  A long amazing eyeful.

    The bridge's downtown 6th Street quickly becomes Whittier Boulevard on the east side of the bridge.  Whittier Boulevard through East L.A. is an interesting drive in itself.

    Traveling Southern California extensively, I find the diversification of the state's people and sites fascinating.

    Bridge design can be a positive visual asset to a city's infrastructure, not just a means of vehicle conveyance. 

    Reflecting upon Barstow's selected design for the First Street bridge replacement, Barstow has much to learn from Los Angeles.

Click here to read, "Like,"
comment, or share on:
Newberry Springs

Follow us on Twitter and
be notified of new stories:
Newberry Springs Community Alliance

© 2022 Ted Stimpfel