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Monday
Jul182011

Carmageddon Averted: I-405 Reopens Early

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Los Angeles’ feared "Carmageddon" ended before it ever really began Sunday, as officials re-opened Interstate 405 17 hours ahead of their Monday morning target.

Billboards warning of historic gridlock, celebrity tweets to stay in your neighborhood and stern mayoral pronouncements apparently scared most Angelenos off the road (or out of town) during the shutdown of a 10-mile stretch of I-405, a vital north-south artery connecting the city to the San Fernando Valley.

The closure turned the city's Westside into a relaxing, sun-dappled playland where restaurants seated patrons without waits and Angelenos made uncharacteristic use of their own footpower to get around.

At least two intrepid skateboarders dodged police and California Highway Patrol officers staged at the on ramps for an unimpeded adventure down the 405, only to be warned they risked arrest if they attempted a repeat performance.

Officials can only hope residents won't have become complacent 11 months from now -- when the remaining half of the Mulholland Bridge comes down in Carmageddon II.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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