Sixth Street Viaduct

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6th Street Viaduct
Sixth Street Bridge over Los Angeles River.jpg
Sixth Street Bridge
Coordinates 34°2′17″N 118°13′37″W / 34.03806°N 118.22694°W / 34.03806; -118.22694 (Sixth Street Viaduct)Coordinates: 34°2′17″N 118°13′37″W / 34.03806°N 118.22694°W / 34.03806; -118.22694 (Sixth Street Viaduct)
Carries 6th Street/Whittier Boulevard
Crosses Metrolink tracks, Los Angeles River, Union Pacific Railroad tracks, Santa Ana Freeway, Golden State Freeway, several local streets
Locale Downtown and Boyle Heights areas of Los Angeles, California
Official name Sixth Street Bridge from the LA River
Other name(s) 6th Street Viaduct
Maintained by City of Los Angeles and California Department of Transportation (Caltrans)
ID number 53C-1880 (City of Los Angeles), 53-0595 (Caltrans)
Design Viaduct
Material Reinforced concrete and steel
Total length 3,500 feet (1,100 m)
Width 46 feet (14 m)
Opened 1932
Sixth Street Viaduct is located in California
Sixth Street Viaduct

The Sixth Street Viaduct is a viaduct bridge that connects the Arts District in Downtown Los Angeles with the Boyle Heights neighborhood. It spans the Los Angeles River, the Santa Ana Freeway (US 101), and the Golden State Freeway (I-5), as well as Metrolink and Union Pacific railroad tracks and several local streets. Built in 1932, the viaduct is composed of three independent structures: the reinforced concrete west segment, the central steel arch segment over the river, and the reinforced concrete east segment. In 1986, the Caltrans bridge survey found the 6th Street Viaduct eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places.[1]

Demolition of the bridge is scheduled to begin January 8, 2016.[2]

Demolition and replacement[edit]

During the construction of the viaduct in the 1930s, an on-site plant was used to supply the concrete for construction. However, the quality of the concrete turned out to have a high alkali content and led to an alkali-silica reaction which creates cracks in the concrete and saps the strength of the structure. It is one of the only historic LA River bridges to suffer from ASR.

Estimates are that the current viaduct has a 70% probability of collapse due to a major earthquake within 50 years.[3][4]

The bridge will close January 3, 2016 and demolition is scheduled to begin January 8, 2016. An estimated 48,000 cubic yards of concrete, 1,245 tons of structural steel and 4,200 tons of rebar will be hauled away as construction begins on the replacement.[5] The new bridge designed by architect Michael Maltzan is set to be completed in 2018. City leaders are also looking into building parks and plazas around the newly built bridge.

Cultural depictions[edit]

The bridge has appeared in numerous films, television shows, music videos and video games since 1932.


Music videos[edit]


  1. ^ "History of the Sixth Street Viaduct". Retrieved 24 October 2015. 
  2. ^ "LA to say goodbye to iconic 6th Street Bridge with farewell party". FOX 11 Los Angeles. October 24, 2015. Retrieved 24 October 2015. 
  3. ^ "Sixth Street Viaduct has Cancer; Suggested Treatment: New Bridge". Southern California Public Radio. Retrieved 24 October 2015. 
  4. ^ "Safety Concerns for Sixth Street Bridge". Los Angeles Downtown News. Retrieved 24 October 2015. 
  5. ^ "New 6th Street Viaduct is a bridge to a different future". Los Angeles Times. June 1, 2015. Retrieved 24 October 2015. 

External links[edit]