Elon Musk Willing to Spend More Money on Widening of 405 Freeway
April 26, 2013 7:28 PM
He has already spent $50,000 on the project
Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk is
sick of the traffic
on California's Interstate 405, and he's offering additional money to make it wider.
Musk has already spent $50,000 on the project to widen the 405, but recent delays and budget overruns have extended the timeframe -- and Musk said he'll throw extra money out there to speed things up.
Musk said the money would be "a contribution to the city and my own happiness. If it can actually make a difference, I would gladly contribute funds and ideas. I've super had it."
"The 405 … varies from bad to horrendous," said Musk. "It just seems people in Los Angeles are being tortured by this.… I don't know why they aren't marching in the streets."
Musk typically uses the 405 to travel between his home in Bel-Air and his SpaceX factory in Hawthorne.
Much of the delays are due to new sound walls having to be demolished and rebuilt, the relocation of utility lines and arguments over the placement of ramps.
The 405 project is now expected to take at least a year longer than first anticipated -- putting the completion date between June 2014 and fall 2014 -- and cost about $100 million more than the originally budgeted $1 billion.
Los Angeles County officials and board members of Metro (which is running the project) have said that the contractors on the project are a huge problem in the current 405 situation. Zev Yaroslavsky, Los Angeles County supervisor and board member of Metro, said the contractors have "shown a complete lack of sensitivity and
empathy for the community
Kiewit Corporation, an employee-owned Fortune 500 contractor based in Omaha, Nebraska, is heading much of the project.
"The costs and schedule impacts are the result of the project's overall complexity and the significant challenges associated with multiple unexpected utility and right-of-way issues," said Kiewit. "Kiewit and Metro are committed to working together to minimize future delays and resolve final costs. We ... are committed to delivering the highest-quality product on the I-405 project."
Musk's extra dollars would likely go toward an increase in workers and equipment to speed the process up.
The Los Angeles Times
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