US 99 / US 6 Junction – Tunnel Station

Historical Tour of US 6 / US 99

US 6 / US 99 Junction – Tunnel Station

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Tunnel Station Viaduct.

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Tunnel Station Viaduct, looking toward the original junction.

Detail of the railing.

Detail of the railing.

The Tunnel Station Viaduct, as it is known, was originally built in 1911 by the City of Los Angeles. The structure was later widened in 1936 to its current form. While somewhat modified in the intervening years through the removal of the light posts and seismic retrofitting, the bridge still retains some of its unique features. The railing and sides have an Art Deco look to them, common for bridges in the Los Angeles area from that era.

Sierra Highway heads north, US 99 heads northwest, US 6 and US 99 leave on the road marked with a 4 to the south. The red line heading south, ending on Sierra Highway, is old Foothill Blvd (extended here in 1934).

Sierra Highway heads north, US 99 heads northwest, US 6 and US 99 leave on the road marked with a 4 to the south. The red line heading south, ending on Sierra Highway, is old Foothill Blvd (extended here in 1934).

In 1930, the Newhall Alternate was completed between Tunnel Station (here) and Saugus Junction bypassing Newhall and Saugus. This greatly improved traffic conditions at Tunnel Station Junction, however, it was not to last. In 1934, Foothill Blvd was extended here, functioning as a bypass of Los Angeles, much like I-210 does today diverting traffic bound for Pasadena. After US 6 was extended here in 1937, traffic heading up to the Eastern Sierra increased, again creating traffic jams here.

Tunnel Station Viaduct and the US 6 / US 99 interchange in 1955.

Tunnel Station Viaduct and the US 6 / US 99 interchange in 1955.

Newly completed three-level interchange with US 6 and US 99 in 1955.

Newly completed three-level interchange with US 6 and US 99 in 1955.

US 99 / US 6 Junction in 1996

US 99 / US 6 Junction in 1996

US 99 / US 6 Junction in 1971 - Looking northwest through tunnel.

US 99 / US 6 Junction in 1971 – Looking northwest through tunnel.

Map of the 1954 freeway interchange.

Map of the 1954 freeway interchange.

In 1954, the first segment of the Golden State Freeway was completed through here, bypassing the old junction. It ran from the San Fernando Road / Sepulveda Blvd junction to near the top of Weldon Summit.  A three level interchange was constructed to help alleviate the congestion here. Starting from the top, US 99 is on the top level, US 6 is on the middle level, and a ramp from US 6 West to US 99 South is on the third level. This interchange was in use until the modern interchange between I-5 and SR-14 was built in 1971. That interchange had to be rebuilt due to an earthquake on February 9, 1971. It was finally completed in 1975. In 1994, the I-5/SR-14 interchange was rebuilt yet again after two of the bridges collapsed. The original freeway portion, albeit modified heavily, is still in use today as the I-5 Truck Lanes.

Looking west towards the 5 / 14 interchange.

Looking west towards the 5 / 14 interchange.

Underneath the 5 / 14 interchange looking north from The Old Road. This photo was taken in 1997.

Underneath the 5 / 14 interchange looking north from The Old Road. This photo was taken in 1997.

Postcard from the 1920's showing the Los Angeles Aqueduct and US 99. This is just west of the present Balboa Blvd OC.

Postcard from the 1920′s showing the Los Angeles Aqueduct and US 99. This is just west of the present Balboa Blvd OC.

ACSC map showing the modern configuration from the 210 to the 14.

ACSC map showing the modern configuration from the 210 to the 14.

Historic photos of the US 6/US 99 interchange

Go East on US 6 and North US 99 (1926-1930)

Go North on US 99 to Bakersfield

Go South on US 99 / West US 6

Go East on Foothill Blvd. (LR 157 and SR-118) to Pasadena

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