The grand opening of the 6th Street Viaduct project in Los Angeles will kick off Saturday with a community celebration and continue through the weekend.
The four-lane bridge will connect Boyle Heights and the Arts District over a 3,060-foot width that spans the Los Angeles River, the 101 Freeway, train tracks and Metrolink tracks.
Dubbed the “Ribbon of Light,” the $588 million project is considered the largest bridge project in the city’s history and spanned six years, with delays due to COVID-19.
“After more than six years of closure, we are thrilled to reopen the newly constructed Sixth Street Viaduct and usher in a new era for Los Angeles,” City Councilman Kevin de León said in a press release. “This celebration will be a tribute to the years of dedicated work that went into creating one of the most inspiring public works projects in our city’s history.
To recognize the completion of this project, the city will host a weekend celebration. There will be an official dedication ceremony at the bridge on Friday, during which city officials will hold a press conference. The media event is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. and will include LA Mayor Eric Garcetti, Councilman De León and City Engineer Gary Lee Moore.
The community celebration open to the public will begin on Saturday.
About 15,000 residents are expected at Saturday’s event, which will include live music, food, a market, a vintage car show — which includes a tribute to the lowrider — and more, according to the 6th Street Viaduct Replacement. Bureau of Engineering.
Saturday evening will end with a fireworks display and the official lighting of the bridge.
As of June 22, tickets for the Saturday event are sold out. Those who have responded will have priority access from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. to participate in the event. After 6 p.m., ticket holders will need to line up to access the event.
Residents who were unable to obtain tickets can participate in Sunday Community Events, which will not require tickets. Gates will open at 11 a.m. for bicycles and pedestrians only. Pedestrians are encouraged to walk along sidewalks, while bicycles will have access to traffic lanes.
The bridge will officially open to cars at 7 p.m. Sunday.
The original 6th Street Viaduct, built in 1932, was a structural landmark in Los Angeles featured in films such as “Grease” and “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.” The new viaduct was built to replace the original, which was deemed “seismically deficient and irreparable” and demolished in 2016.
The new bridge was designed by architect Michael Maltzan, who focused on creating “something that could unite the city in a more meaningful way”. The design of the bridge was selected by the Bureau of Engineering through an international design competition.
Beginning in 2023, the Bureau of Engineering will begin constructing a 12-acre park below the bridge. Sixth Street Park is estimated at $40 million and “will provide access to the Los Angeles River, public art, recreational programs and more,” according to a press release.