In case you haven’t heard yet, the iconic 1932 bridge in Los Angeles is getting a major makeover. The landmark bridge has been the backdrop to movies like Grease, Anchorman, Gone on 60 Seconds and scores of music videos by artists from Kanye West to Missy Elliott. In 2012, it was identified that the original 1932 bridge was suffering from concrete cancer, making it potentially earthquake unsafe. And so, the bridge had to go.
Since then, the city of Los Angeles has been keeping a close eye on the plans for the replacement of this bridge. The new bridge, designed by Michael Maltzan is scheduled to open in 2020. Renderings have been produced, but the most up to date plans can be seen in a new video, giving us a much better idea of how the bridge will look, feel and function with the community.
The new viaduct will look and function in a dramatically different way. The design is being called “Ribbon of Light.” It will provide crossing for cars traveling from the Arts District to Boyle Heights over the LA River and both the 5 and 101 freeways. The wavy new bride is a meant to be a destination all on its own.
As the video shows, 12 acres of parks will be built below the bridge, which will replace and enhance the existing industrial areas. New staircases and paths will encourage pedestrians to walk up and over the bridge. You will be able to climb to two of its arches and access the bridge on your bike from multiple points. Once on the bridge, bikers can pedal in buffered bike lanes.
The coolest path that you will see in the video shows a dramatic, spiraling ramp funneling visitors to the green space below, which will ultimately connect to the LA River.