Sunday, July 17, 2011

Carmageddon that wasn't

The 405 is back open almost a full day ahead of schedule, and the LA freeways were almost never this clear. However they're doing this shutdown again in about a year. What I hope people remember is that it wasn't Carmageddon because the publicity for this event was aces. Everyone knew, everyone tried to plan around it where possible, and people stayed the heck out of the way.

Humans have a problem processing non-events as successes. So I expect next year, someone will say "well, it wasn't such a big deal last year, so why should we spend all this money and time putting up extra freeway signs in LA AND San Fran for a month ahead of time?" And next time will be the Carmageddon this year wasn't. Because this year was successful and someone with signatory power will only remember that this year wasn't as bad as it could have been and forget all the work it took to make sure it wasn't as bad as it could have been. As someone who has spent 45 minutes on a saturday afternoon traversing that 10 mile long closed section of freeway, I can attest that it is a highly popular route.

Thankfully for me, all my traveling was done last week: Trips to LAX and San Diego via that section of freeway, and SanFran via Burbank.