Given our 6+ months of experience dealing with Los Angeles traffic on a weekly basis, we would like to share with you a key route to avoid rush hour traffic traveling from the Valley to Los Angeles International (LAX). There are plenty options that takes you from the San Fernando Valley (Burbank, Glendale, Hollywood, etc.) to LAX. The options are:
1. CA-134 West to the US-101 North to the I-405 South — This is the worst option because the US-101 to I-405 merge is the worst traffic junction in the US. The 405 South is a disaster from the hill to the I-10 connection (probably a top 5 worst traffic bottleneck in the US). Going through two of the top five worst traffic junctions is not a good idea.
2. US-101 South to I-110 South — US-101 South is generally bad when heading downtown. The merge from US-101 to I110 is located in the heart of downtown Los Angeles which is one of the worst connectors in the US.
3. I5 South to I-110 South to the I-105 — You will need to merge twice with downtown traffic. The first merge is the I-5 to the I-110. The second merge is the I-110 with US-101.
ALL the options listed has its major bottlenecks. We have figured a way to modify Option 3 and cut our commute time from the Valley to LAX by 30 minutes compared to the normal bumper to bumper route.
Here are the step by step directions:
1. Take Interstate 5 South which is normally clear until you get to Los Feliz Exit (Griffith Park). Right as traffic is building up, you will see CA-2 the Glendale Freeway.
2. Get on CA-2 (Glendale Freeway) South. CA-2 South ends in about a mile and turns into Glendale Blvd. Stay on your left when you hit Glendale Blvd (after the freeway ends). Go on Glendale Blvd for about 1.2 miles through local streets (passing Echo Park which is to your right) until Glendale Blvd ends.
3. When Glendale Blvd ends, you will see West 1st and West 2nd Street (see map). Make sure you bare left and go onto W2nd Street.
4. Stay on West 2nd Street until you have passed an underpass (which is I-110) and make a right at the light onto Figueroa Street.
5. Once you’re on Figueroa, make a right on the next light which is West 3rd Street.
6. On West 3rd Street, you will see the on-ramp for I-110 (Harbor Freeway) South.
7. Take I-110 Harbor Freeway South until you see I-105. There will be plenty of signs pointing you to LAX. The I-110 Harbor Freeway also has a bonus: the carpool lane.
8. Take I-105 West and exit Sepulveda which will take you straight to LAX, rental car return facilities and long term parking garages.
The above driving directions help you avoid the I-5 to I-110 merge as well as the I-110 and US-101 merge in downtown Los Angeles. These two junctions are one of the worst in America.
We hope you find these directions to be helpful. Feel free to leave us your comment or suggestions of better routes.