Busy southbound 605 Freeway connector to close for construction
In what could be a mini-version of "Carmegeddon," which shut down a major Westside freeway last summer, a busy connector on the southbound 605 Freeway between Long Beach and Seal Beach will close for two weeks starting Monday because of construction.
The 605 ramp that allows motorists to reach the southbound 405 Freeway will be closed so work crews can rebuild it and make room for a new carpool lane connector as well as additional lanes on the 405.
The southbound connector is especially busy during evening rush hours and during the summer months when traffic is headed to the beach. California Department of Transportation records show that motorists make up to 185,000 trips a day on average through the junction of the two freeways.
Much of that traffic will have to detour onto major surface streets through residential and commercial areas in Long Beach, Rossmoor and Seal Beach.
Another alternative is to exit the 605 at Spring Street in Long Beach, proceed to Woodruff Avenue and turn left to head to the southbound 405.
Between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, motorists are advised to exit the 605 at Willow, turn left onto Studebaker, then left onto East 2nd Street/Westminster Avenue, and finally left at Seal Beach Boulevard.
The ramp construction is part of the $277-million West County Connector project, which will create a seamless link between carpool lanes and ease rush-hour bottlenecks on the 405, 22 and 605 freeways. The work is scheduled to be completed in 2014.
-- Dan Weikel