South Pasadenan: 710 Freeway Fighters Leave Lasting Legacy

Monday, July 8 2019

Every few miles along the drive up the Long Beach Freeway, cars pass underneath huge, green highway signs that span the roadway’s lanes: “Interstate 710 North,” they say. “Pasadena.”

But Interstate 710 does not go to Pasadena. And therein lies a saga.

You know it already. A determined group of citizens and municipal leaders fought an improbable, multi-generational battle to protect their beloved, 3.42 square-mile domestic oasis from a steamroller of self-proclaimed modernity. The institutional effort to extend I-710 through the heart of South Pasadena was defeated.

The crosscurrents of people, issues and events in that saga are legion. A full account of the names and stories of the players is impossible to render. The amount of money spent tallies in the millions of dollars and the total number of pages generated inestimable. A Historic Log of Events spanning some 70 years – drawn from among the innumerable environmental review documents – records over a 150 milestones.

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