Carmageddon hits Los Angeles: Five ways to cope

“Carmageddon” is upon us! The 53-hour shutdown of a 10-mile segment of the 405 freeway, Los Angeles’s busiest traffic corridor, began at 7 p.m., Friday evening. For months, bulb-lit billboards have warned the city of severe traffic delays, while newspapers and TV stations ask whether apocalyptic congestion will keep 500,000 travelers from getting where they need to go for nearly three days. How are Los Angelenos coping? Here are five ways:

Ringo H.W. Chiu/AP
A construction worker places orange cones to close the ramp of Interstate 405 freeway at Santa Monica Boulevard on Friday in Los Angeles. Los Angeles city officials are advising residents to stay home or stay away from the area over the weekend fearing massive traffic jams of what has become known as 'Carmageddon.'

1. Staying home

Photo illustration: Odilon Dimier / Altopress / Newscom

“I think that’s the best answer to this,” says Bart Taylor, father of four, who usually takes the family to the beach on mid-July weekends. Sitting at a local coffee shop, Taylor points to the banner headline of Friday's LA Daily News: “Here’s your guide: Just stay home.” The article quotes city officials who claim that traffic effects will reach from the coast all the way past downtown, perhaps 15 miles inland.

“They’re telling us to stay away from the 405 and the parallel canyon roads and to not take shortcuts through neighborhoods,” says Taylor. He usually heads northwest on the 101 and then cuts over Malibu Canyon to Pacific Coast highway and then north to Zuma Beach.

“But I’m going to go that one better. I’ll be in my backyard commuting back and forth from my pool to my hammock," Taylor says. "Yeah, Netflix and others are offering special discount deals on movies, but who wants to sit inside in the daytime on a hot weekend? Not me.”

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