- California State Route 57 (SR-57) is a major north-south freeway corridor that provides commuters access to and from the San Gabriel Valley, portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Orange and Riverside Counties. California State Route 60 (SR-60) is a major east-west freeway corridor that is parallel to and south of the Interstate 10 (San Bernardino Freeway) and links commuter and commercial travel to and from the San Gabriel Valley, Pomona Valley, San Bernardino and Riverside Counties to the Los Angeles Central Business District.
- When the existing freeway interchange connecting SR-57 with SR-60 was designed, the underlying “Valley-shaped” terrain forced both freeways into a common alignment for a distance of 2 miles in the vicinity of Grand Avenue, referred to as the “Confluence”.
- Caltrans has most recently identified the 57/60 Confluence area as the #1 congestion segment within District 7 (Los Angeles and Ventura counties) and #3 in the State of California and has consistently been among the top 5 in the District and top 10 in the State.
- A Freight Performance Measures Analysis of 30 Freight Bottlenecks conducted by the American Transportation Research Institute in March 2009 ranks the Confluence as the #7 bottleneck in the Nation.
- Within the 2 mile Confluence segment, drivers attempt to weave across multiple lanes in the 57/60 “bottleneck,” in which 17 lanes of traffic condense sharply into just 14 total lanes, resulting in long delays in operation for both freeways and high accident rates.
- More than 356,000 commercial and personal vehicles use the interchange every day an average of 1 million vehicles every 3 days, or about 100 million vehicles annually.
- With significant increase expected in both population and truck volume, traffic is anticipated to grow by 10-12% in the next 20 years.
- As traffic from either junction begin to merge as a result of lanes dropping, commuters and trucks are forced to cross over several lanes to exit at Grand Avenue or move from one freeway to the other.
- With 1,850 feet (standard is 4,920 feet) to merge safely in the west junction, crisscrossing motorists are often involved in side swiping traffic collisions.
- More accidents occur in the Confluence segment when compared with the State average associated with the frequent stop-and-go patterns and high volumes of traffic weaving between lanes.
- Currently accidents are averaged at approximately 583 accidents per year on the freeways and an additional 89 accidents accumulated on the ramps. On average, approximately one-third (1/3) of accidents result in injury or fatality.
- The Confluence will eliminate the need for drivers to make multiple lane weaves in short distances, thereby reducing the likelihood of these accidents.
- The proposed improvements would result in a reduction of at least 162 accidents per year, or nearly 3,300 less accidents over the next 20 years, and likely reduce accidents that cause injury or fatality by at least 1,000 occurrences over the next 20 years.
- The use of parkland by the Project will be mitigated and there will be no net parkland loss as regulated by the California Parkland Preservation Act.
- The project is staged to time construction such that the City’s planned 26 acre natural habitat restoration project will not be impacted.
- The 57/60 Confluence is on the critical regional route for the movement of goods from the Southern California ports.
- It is estimated that $375 billion worth of goods move through the Los Angeles & Long Beach ports each year. An estimated 9% of the traffic that travels through the 57/60 Confluence is composed of commercial vehicles carrying goods that entered the country through the ports.
- Traffic congestion regularly delays about one-fifth of commercial trucks in the region, increasing the cost of shipping by 50% to 250% according to studies obtained by the Los Angeles Times.
- Using the recent American Recovery and Reinvestment Act formula for job creation, the 57/60 Confluence Improvement will generate approximately 5,148 jobs and sustain several more State jobs at Caltrans.