Thursday, May 14, 2009

The "Oakland Road Portal"

Leads to another dimension. Specifically, the dimension of the street below.

This is a massive fissure in an overpass on the southbound 880 in Oakland, approximately 1/4 mile south of the Broadway exit. It's in the far right lane. I first noticed it when stuck in the traffic that tends to condense in this area during rush-hour. I was looking down, and I thought: "Hey, wait a minute...isn't that the surface street down there through this massive crack in the overpass? Shouldn't there be like re-bar or girders or three feet of concrete there?"

The road is rough because of the trucks that use this route on their way to Los Angeles. The speed limit around here is 55, but no one seems to care. Imagine what 24 hours of 365 days a year of double-trailered semi-trucks barelling down the highway at 75 will do to a highway that is on top of that, almost never maintained. I've been on dirt roads that are nicer than the Nimitz. Other noticeable features of this freeway include: the "bowling-ball sized crater near southbound High Street", and "That big step where the pavement type changes," and "The precariously leaning sound barier that caught on fire late last year.* "

The fissure is the most worrisome of these, though, because I can't help but think that the entire right lane is going to fall off into the trainyard below during the next major earthquake. I mean, you can see the street below through this crack as you drive over it, and you can't see girders. That is one deep crack in the overpass. It has odd greenish blotches of cement in it as if someone had made some halfassed attempt to fill it in in the past**, but these repair attempts seem to just crumble and fall through.

So, in conclusion: California legislature, I know you guys couldn't spend money wisely to save your lives, but could you maybe spare a couple million to stabilize this part of the Nimitz?

Coming soon if I can get it: picture of the blue sky from below this crack.


*The sound barier *used* to have vines growing on it. Now it's just bald.
**Perhaps with bubblegum?

1 comment:

Kiyoshi said...

O_o; I usually don't drive in that lane on that overpass.. but holy smokes. Yeah they better fix that ASAP!