More Progress on the New Sixth Street Viaduct

Nearly all of the 20 iconic arches now appear complete

Construction on the Sixth Street Viaduct is nearing completion. Photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.
Construction on the Sixth Street Viaduct is nearing completion. Photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.

It’s time for yet another Sixth Street Viaduct construction update. In 2021, the city of Los Angeles has made a lot of progress on the $588 million, nearly mile-long landmark viaduct, expected to open in Summer of 2022. The structure’s iconic concrete arches have already become a part of the Boyle Heights and downtown L.A. landscapes – visible from other river bridges, many streets, and even Hollenbeck Park.

View of Sixth Street Viaduct - via Google Maps.
Aerial view of the under-construction Sixth Street Viaduct – via Google Maps. Note that the historic 1931 viaduct was more or less two straight-line structures joined at a slightly angled elbow just east of the L.A. River. The new bridge is wider, with no angle joint, but instead a gentle freeway-like curve. In this aerial, the straight line edge of the prior bridge is visible – in the diagonal edges of buildings immediately south of the under-construction bridge – between the river and the 101 .

Just over a year ago – in October 2020 – the first of the bridge’s falsework arch frames began to appear. Now, about 18 of the bridge’s 20 monumental arches appear complete.

View of the 6th Street Viaduct from the 4th Street Viaduct
View of the 6th Street Viaduct from the 4th Street Viaduct – nine of the ten pairs of arches appear complete or nearly complete

The viaduct’s 20 arches vary in size. Most are 30 feet tall, with two 60-feet-tall pairs flanking the Los Angeles River and a 40-feet-tall pair over the 101 Freeway.

Below are new 6th Street Viaduct photographs – arranged from east to west – Boyle Heights to downtown L.A.

The eastern - Boyle Heights - end of the Sixth Street Viaduct is furthest along.
The eastern – Boyle Heights – end of the Sixth Street Viaduct is furthest along. The easternmost arch – over the 101 Freeway – gives a good sense of what the entire bridge will look like when the temporary construction framing structures (called falsework) are removed.
The viaduct's completed concrete arches include crisscrossed cable stays
The viaduct’s completed concrete arches include crisscrossed cable stays
Where the frames have been removed, the structures - both roadway and arches - appear relatively light, not bulky
Where the frames have been removed, the structures – both roadway and arches – appear relatively light, not bulky
Sixth Street Viaduct arches just west of the 101
Sixth Street Viaduct arch just west of the 101
All the 6th Street Viaduct arches east of the L.A. River appear complete or nearly so
All the 6th Street Viaduct arches east of the L.A. River appear complete or nearly so
The 6th Street VIaduct's 60-foot arches just east of the L.A.
The 6th Street Viaduct’s 60-foot arches – just east of the L.A. River – are nearing completion
Arches over the L.A. River
The viaduct’s arches over the L.A. River still have their falsework
downtown
The westernmost arches – in the downtown L.A. Arts District – are the least far along

Construction is also proceeding on improvements in the areas under the bridge. Pedestrians and cyclists will have access to the Pico Aliso area below via a spiral ramp located just east of the river – west of Mission Road at 6th Street. Construction of the spiral ramp is just getting underway there.

New Sixth Street Viaduct ped/bike access ramp under construction
New Sixth Street Viaduct ped/bike access spiral ramp under construction

Below the new bridge will be the 12-acre Sixth Street PARC (Park, Arts, River and Connectivity Improvements) Project, though park construction won’t get substantially underway until after bridge construction is done. Leading to the park is the Mission/Myers Roundabout Project, which includes a bike path (connecting to the spiral ramp above), pedestrian improvements, and landscaping.

Roundabout
Mission/Myers Roundabout construction as of last week

The future roundabout area is now fenced off with some construction progress visible.

Below is a series of construction progress photos from the same location – looking north on Anderson Street:

Falsework arches now visible on the Sixth Street Bridge - photos by Joe Linton/Streetsblog L.A.
Sixth Street Viaduct – October 2020
Sixth Street Viaduct - August 2021
Sixth Street Viaduct – August 2021
6thStBridge2
Sixth Street Viaduct – November 2021

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