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Want to tear down monuments to racism and segregation? Bulldoze L.A. freeways

Los Angeles Freeway Interchange. Image from Wikipedia

by Matthew Fleischer, The Los Angeles Times


  • The construction of freeways was a direct result of Los Angeles’s racist past, creating a city segregated on the basis of race, causing the destruction of black neighborhoods and the elimination of beneficial transportation 
  • The Red Car transit system provided access to residents throughout the city, creating thriving, diverse neighborhoods, but disappeared once cars became more accessible
  • A mass influx of African-Americas moving west from the South resulted in more Jim Crow-based laws in LA
  • The 1944 Federal-Aid Highway Act allocated funds for nearly 2,000 miles of freeways in California, which were then used to break apart unsegregated and black communities
  • Predominately white areas such as Beverly Hills  and South Pasadena were able to protest and fight any plans for freeways in their neighborhoods
  • Car-dependent suburbs developed away from the city and accessible public transit as a means to keep black Angelenos from moving in
  • These freeways serve as physical barriers from white neighborhoods to black neighborhoods and these disparities are still seen today

The Climate Center’s Climate-Safe California campaign calls for clean mobility solutions, including a phase-out of all gas-powered vehicles to eliminate air pollution in our most vulnerable communities. 

Read More: https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2020-06-24/bulldoze-la-freeways-racism-monument