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Environmental Activists Push For Input On 710 Corridor Project

LONG BEACH ( — A coalition of community and environmental activists rallied Wednesday to demand Sacramento hear their concerns before any major freeway expansion construction begins along the Long Beach (710) Freeway.

KNX 1070's Ron Kilgore reports the Coalition for Environmental Health and Justice (CEHJ) is calling on California Gov. Jerry Brown to sign Senate Bill 811.

Environmental Activists Push For Input On 710 Corridor Project

Residents from Bell, Commerce, Huntington Park, Long Beach and other neighborhoods throughout the 710 Corridor gathered with signs in rainy weather in support of SB811, authored by State Senator Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens.

SB811, which requires Caltrans to examine an alternative plan for the 710 Corridor Project in its entirety, is currently on Gov. Brown's desk.

The 710 Corridor Project, the largest infrastructure project in the nation, focuses on a 17-mile stretch of road that carries very heavy truck traffic to and from the Long Beach ports complex.

Last year, Caltrans released an environmental impact report for plans to expand the corridor from 8 to 17 lanes, which opponents say included alternatives that would destroy residential areas along the corridor.

"We're not against the expansion; we just want to make sure that throughout the process, the community's needs are not being ignored," said Kat Madrigal with East Yard Communities For Environmental Justice.

Supporters of the bill are urging Brown to sign SB811 before an Oct. 13 deadline.

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