COMPTON, Calif. – A bridge that takes travelers off the westbound 91 freeway into Compton has been closed for a couple of years. Since the closure the earth under it continues to erode at what appears to be dangerous levels.
According to Compton Mayor Emma Sharif the bridge closed in 2020 due to a fire.
“In 2020 a significant fire took place under the Artesia Bridge and it was declared not operable for traffic use, therefore, a closure was placed for safety risks. That closure created a devastating blow to local and regional businesses; diminished city revenue for those impacted and created traffic complications for motorists and our residents.”
There was no news coverage of the fire Sharif is referencing.
Compton Mayor Emma Sharif provided an update to local businesses that are directly impacted by the closure of the Artesia Bridge that provides access to businesses adjacent to the freeway.
The City was contacted about the status of the repairs and they provided a document that did not include the city seal or a date which was allegedly sent to businesses adjacent to the closure thanking them for their patience.
The city of Compton announced they were awarded $12 million to repair the Artesia Bridge during the Sept. 6, 2022, regular city council meeting.
“AB 179 passed and Gov. Newsom signed the bill today and we have been given $12 million for the bridge and I look forward to getting more information,” said Mayor Emma Sharif.
Months prior, the City held a press conference on the bridge alongside a representative from Crystal Park Casino to request $30 million for repairs.
“The town center is impacted the worst, as businesses are losing 150,000 to 400,000 dollars a day in revenue, and those numbers hurt the city,” she added. “Many of the stores in the town center like El Pollo Loco, Bank of America, Target, Home Depot, the casino, McDonald’s, and other small businesses in the area are struggling to stay open. If this bridge isn’t fixed they may have to close down, which will be a major loss for the city.”
Hi, Caltrans is aware of it and reinspected the site, and there is no danger to the public. It is damage from our last series of storms, and Caltrans will repair it. It was covered with plastic which now is missing, so it will be covered again. Thanks for reaching out to us!— Caltrans District 7 (@CaltransDist7) January 31, 2023
Over the weekend, a photo of the erosion around the bridge was shared showing it is becoming a dire situation as the City has received record amounts of rain over the last few weeks. Caltrans swiftly closed a street in Arleta after erosion was present that caused a safety hazard.
Related: Caltrans shuts down street to inspect for erosion
We sent out a tweet on social media to the City and Caltrans who provided this response.
“Hi, Caltrans is aware of it and reinspected the site, and there is no danger to the public. It is damage from our last series of storms, and Caltrans will repair it. It was covered with plastic which now is missing, so it will be covered again. Thanks for reaching out to us!”
The City doesn’t have a schedule for when construction will begin, however, they do anticipate the repairs being completed in 2024.
Will the bridge make it until then?