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City Files New Suit to Stop Freeway Extension

The city has filed a new federal lawsuit to block the construction of the Long Beach Freeway extension and to seek an injunction to prevent further preparations for its completion.

The lawsuit is a response to a ruling by U.S. District Judge William Rea earlier this week that let expire a 25-year-old injunction preventing the purchases of property along the route and demolition of state structures there.

Rea rejected the city’s move to extend the injunction by adding to the 1973 lawsuit. “In allowing the old injunction to expire, Judge Rea ruled that our claims should be brought in a new lawsuit,” Antonio Rossmann, the city’s attorney, said.

The city is seeking a new injunction to prevent the demolition and purchase of more homes in the pathway of the $1.4-billion freeway through Pasadena, South Pasadena and the Eastside.

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Rossmann said he expects a court to grant the injunction while the court examines the merits of the lawsuit, which claims that federal approval for the project violates environmental laws.

“Caltrans has recognized that it should not attempt hasty demolitions or property acquisitions during this period. If necessary, we will immediately obtain a temporary restraining order,” he said.

After more than three decades of delays, federal transportation officials recently approved the extension connecting the San Bernardino and Foothill freeways.


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