#101SlowJam is no oldies request show. It’s a 40-hour headache

6th Street Bridge

The 6th Street Bridge is seen in this Jan. 27, 2016, photo as some visitors and city officials go for a final walk across the bridge, which is set for demolition.

(Irfan Khan / Los Angeles Times)

It might sound like an Art Laboe-style radio request program, but #101SlowJam has nothing to do with sappy love songs — even though it will probably make you cry.

The buzzy hashtag is officialdom’s attempt at blunting the pain of a 40-hour traffic headache that begins at 10 p.m. Friday. That’s when transportation authorities will shut down a busy 2.5-mile stretch of the 101 Freeway so that demolition crews can begin removal of the 6th Street Bridge.

101 Freeway closure
(Paul Duginski)

So if this is news to you, you might want to cancel those weekend plans to visit downtown’s trendiest bars and pubs, or, better yet, plan on taking the Metro instead.

The closure will run from the split of the 10 and 101 freeways to the interchange of the 5, 10 and 101 freeways, according to the L.A. Bureau of Engineering. Motorists traveling west on the 60 from the Pomona area will not be able to access the 101, officials said.

In a video warning L.A. drivers of the closure, Mayor Eric Garcetti teamed up with students from Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights to create their own slow jam.

If all goes well, the freeway should reopen at 2 p.m. Sunday, just before the Super Bowl kickoff.

Officials say the 84-year-old 6th Street Bridge must be removed because of chemical deterioration in the span’s concrete. The demolition is expected to take nine months, and a replacement bridge is planned for completion in late 2019.

For more details on the freeway closures, visit the Sixth Street Viaduct project’s website.

For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA.


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