It is very discouraging to read of the Southern California Automobile Club's proposal for a major expansion of our freeway system. Granted completion of the Long Beach Freeway and the Glendale Freeway would be advantageous, but realistically both connections have been delayed so long, will it ever happen?
It is enormously expensive construction-wise and it is unrealistic strategically and politically. The costs of right of ways are exorbitant. The delays, because of political jurisdictions, environmental impact reports, removal of homes and buildings, all cause untold delays, as evidenced in the controversies over construction of the Century Freeway. Meanwhile the costs double and triple.
There are alternatives and these methods were used successfully during the Olympic Games of 1984. The key to success is volunteerism. If everyone left his car in the garage one day every two weeks our freeway and street traffic would be greatly reduced. Studies by transportation planners at the Southern California Assn. of Governments and Caltrans indicate that 100% cooperation by all Southern Californians would reduce traffic by as much as 10%. These statistics are rough numbers and have not been published or verified as this is a difficult forecast, but whether it is 2% or 10%, the reduction of automobile usage through everyone's cooperation is a far easier solution than billions for mass transit and more freeways.