A freeway overpass for open space?


First Hollywood floated the plan. Now, Santa Monica is talking about adding open space by building over freeways.

City officials in Santa Monica are exploring the idea of “capping” the 10 Freeway between 17th and 14th avenues as a way to add seven acres of land to the city and possibly create more open space.

The City Council voted Tuesday night to authorize city staff to submit an application to the state for $250,000 in grant money to fund a feasibility study for the idea.


The freeway deck is envisioned, according to a staff report, as “an opportunity to expand open space, explore joint development, and repair connections with neighborhoods that were broken by construction of the freeway.”

The deck also might serve as a connection between nearby Memorial Park and the part of the city south of the freeway, the report added. Memorial Park is on Olympic between 14th and 16th avenues, just north of the freeway.

Kate Vernez, assistant to the city manager, said the plan would support the current land use framework for the area around Memorial Park.

A similar proposal, to build a 44-acre park atop the Hollywood Freeway between Bronson Avenue and Santa Monica Boulevard, already has passed its own feasibility study -- and would cost about $950 million to complete.