Los Angeles — One of America’s most famous and iconic bridges, the Sixth Street Viaduct, acts as a vital connection between the growing Arts District on the west side of the Los Angeles River and the historic neighborhood of Boyle Heights on the east side. Built in 1932, the bridge needs to be replaced because of a chemical condition that is weakening the bridge’s concrete.

The HNTB-designed Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project is the largest bridge project in the history of Los Angeles and is being led by the City of Los Angeles Bureau of Engineering. When complete, the new signature bridge will serve as a unique addition to LA’s skyline and the Los Angeles River as it improves mobility, enhances safety and connects communities.

In anticipation of the project’s next major phase that involves deconstruction of the current bridge, Councilman Jose Huizar organized a city-wide bridge farewell festival for Angelenos to pay tribute to the famed bridge that has been used in countless movies, music videos and TV commercials, including riverbed car chases. 

“HNTB looks forward to embarking on the next major milestone for the Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project which involves demolition of the existing structure starting early next year in order to make way for Los Angeles’ new signature landmark bridge,” said Vic Martinez, PE, HNTB vice president and project manager. “Thanks to Councilman Huizar’s efforts, Angelenos were treated to a spectacular Sixth Street Bridge Farewell Festival and musical concert that culminated with fireworks, for one final opportunity to celebrate and honor this historic bridge and look forward to its replacement.”

Since work began on the massive project, significant construction progress has already been accomplished, such as building demolition and utility relocation.

Intersection improvements for traffic management consist of sidewalk and corner reconstruction, street widening, permanent traffic signals, left turn phasing, roadway striping and signage. In addition, there will be new audible pedestrian signals, sidewalk improvements, street lighting, crosswalk striping, and ramps compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act to assist pedestrian mobility and safety.

Preparations are underway for the demolition of the existing viaduct which is expected to last through most of 2016. This will be followed by bridge foundation work and the new viaduct construction and improvements.

When the new Sixth Street Viaduct is completed in early 2019, it will be a world-class, iconic piece of architecture that will continue to serve the residents of the City of Los Angeles, create its own legacy and draw aspiring artists and others to its ‘ribbon of arches.’

As a leading infrastructure solutions firm in the U.S., HNTB traces its roots to the West back to work on Pasadena’s Arroyo Seco Bridge in 1914, the firm’s first year of operation.

In Southern California, HNTB has been involved in some of the region’s most high-profile, complex infrastructure programs that are reshaping the region. In addition to the Sixth Street Viaduct Replacement Project, HNTB’s signature infrastructure projects include: the Interstate 405 Sepulveda Pass Improvements project, the Tom Bradley International Terminal Expansion for Los Angeles World Airports; Seattle’s Sound Transit University Link light-rail and tunnel project; the San Francisco 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium; and the “Green Build” expansion at San Diego International Airport.  Currently, the firm is providing design and engineering services for the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project on behalf of the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority.