Officially, the Glen Anderson Freeway
. Named after legendary Los Angeles
congressman and freeway proponent Glen Anderson
, Interstate 105 is the last freeway to be implemented as part of Anderson's plan for the Los Angeles Freeway System
. Planning originally began in 1957, but lawsuits, difficulties in acquiring land, and other problems dragged construction out several decades, causing the freeway to finally be finished in 1993.
The freeway begins in Downey as a spur from Interstate 605, and heads in a generally westward direction. Interstate 105 passes through the cities of South Gate, Lynwood, Los Angeles, Inglewood, and Hawthorne, before finally coming to an end in El Segundo at the foot of LAX. In total the freeway is approximately 17 miles long, and intersects Interstate 605, Interstate 710, Interstate 110, and Interstate 405.
The Anderson freeway is unique in several manners. The first is that the Green Line Light Rail system was designed to run in the median of the freeway, and many of the exits of the freeway are also stops along the Green Line's path. The second is that it was designed with carpool lanes in mind. Nearly the entire length has carpool lanes, with the 405-105 and 110-105 interchanges having dedicated lanes for carpoolers. The final is the near unprecidented amount of compromise in the constructing of the freeway.
The 105 could easily be described as a freeway of compromises. Cities, learning from the divisiveness brought on by previous freeway projects, fought long and hard for projects to minimize the blight caused by this strip of concrete. Massive public works and apprenticeship programs were put in place so that those affected by the freeway could regain lost jobs and perhaps better themselves. Portions of the freeway, some several miles long, were rerouted so that the number of neighborhoods divided by the freeway would be minimized. The compromise wasn't perfect; there were still many people put off by the freeway, but it was better than most previous freeway projects.
Being one of the less traveled Los Angeles freeways, the 105 is usually a fairly good shortcut if you need to get from the west side to the east side of Los Angeles. If you plan out your route correctly, you can usually cut a half hour, or more from your drive by avoiding the bottleneck that is Interstate 10. All in all, the 105 is a fairly well designed freeway, with very few of the shortcomings, such as insanely complex interchanges, which plagued earlier, poorly designed Los Angeles area freeways.