Senator Portantino Introduces Bill to Delete 710 Freeway Extension from California Streets and Highways Code

Published : Monday, December 3, 2018 | 2:57 PM

Following on the heels of last Wednesday’s release of the signed final Environmental Impact Report for 710 Freeway extension which formally sealed the project’s fate, Pasadena representative State Senator Anthony J. Portantino used his first day of the new legislative session Monday to introduce a bill that would delete the 710 freeway extension from state codes.

In 2016, Portantino helped negotiate the process of ending the 710-freeway threat.

Portantino said that during the negotiations, he made a commitment to the activists and to the Department of Transportation to wait until the final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the corridor was certified before introducing legislation to delete the 710 from the streets and highways code.

Last week, Portantino and Transpiration Secretary Brian Annis unveiled the final EIR for the corridor at a press conference in Pasadena, paving the way for Monday’s action.

On the first day of the legislative session, Portantino introduced SB 7 to delete the 710 freeway extension from the California streets and highways code. The bill will also help facilitate the sale of properties owned by Caltrans but leased to several important non-profits by clarifying the value of the properties.

Portantino said he will be working closely with cities within the 710 corridor to help facilitate the proper disposition of the left-over freeway stubs. Once finalized, the stub language will be inserted into SB 7.

The Senator said that SB 7 has already garnered key support from several co-authors, noting that Senator Jim Beall (D-San Jose), Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, and Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D- Los Angeles) and Assemblymember Blanca Rubio (D-Baldwin Park) have all signed on.

“It was very important to me that I maintained the integrity of the commitments that I made in December of 2017 in regard to ending the 710-tunnel threat. Metro, Caltrans and the Secretary all kept to the dignified ending process envisioned for the outcome of the 710 tunnel. Now, the EIR is certified it is appropriate to introduce legislation to further cement the provisions within the EIR. The affected cities and the region can continue to move forward with a calm and cohesive process,” Portantino said.