Animals crossing Highway 101 in Los Angeles show that the world will be fine

A $ 120 million highway crossing was built just for animals. Some argue that they should be built “everywhere”, but others have rejected the plan.

The crews cleared land on a highly anticipated wildlife passage on a freeway in Los Angeles.

Designed to provide relief for mountain lions and other landlocked animals, the approximately $ 120 million crossing on Highway 101 in Liberty Canyon is considered the largest intersection of its kind in the world, covering 65 m out of 10 highway and sidewalk lanes.

It is also the first to be funded significantly through private donations along with public support and received incredible feedback when construction articles went out of fashion this week.

“They work. Please build it,” wrote Pam Nichols. “Please build them everywhere.”

“We need more of these crossings instead of multi-billion dollar sports stadiums,” added Ligaya Yado.

But others weren’t convinced it was a smart move.

“My goodness, I am in favor of conserving and protecting the environment, but Los Angeles needs to put its priorities in order, starting with the homeless problem,” said Connor Caudill.

“These wildlife flyovers are great in theory, but they have created an interesting problem in other places where they have been implemented,” added Darrell Lee. “They channel both predators and prey through the same narrow passage and the predators have learned that all they have to do is get out and eventually the food will get to them.”

The Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing was developed after 20 years of National Park Service studies that found roads and urban development are deadly to animals trying to move to the Los Angeles area.

Urban development has also created habitat islands that can genetically isolate the region’s animals.

Construction begins a day after a mountain lion was fatally shot by a vehicle on the 405 Freeway in the Brentwood area, highlighting the need for safe routes for Los Angeles wildlife to access.

“This week was supposed to be a party as we celebrate the opening of a wildlife bridge in Agoura Hills. Instead, we are saddened by the violent death of yet another mountain lion, ”said JP Rose, senior attorney at the Center for Biological Diversity.

“These tragedies are preventable if California invests in multiple wildlife crossings, which protect both wildlife and people from dangerous collisions. I hope our leaders in Sacramento take a serious look at the Safe Roads and Wildlife Protection Act, a sensitive piece of legislation that will bring more wildlife crossings into the state. “

The death of the mountain lion on Thursday in the Brentwood area was the second in less than a month. Another lion was killed by a vehicle on the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu on March 23.

The researchers estimated that the mountain lion population in the Santa Monica Mountains could become extinct within 50 years without an influx of genetic diversity.

The lions are largely isolated due to the highways that act as barriers to movement through the region.

The crossing aims to provide a link between the small population of mountain lions in the Santa Monica Mountains and the larger and genetically diverse populations to the north.

The intersection is named after the Annenberg Foundation, a major financial contribution to the effort.

The effort is a public-private partnership that includes Caltrans, the National Park Service, the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy / Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority, the Santa Monica Mountains Resource Conservation District, and the National Wildlife Federation. The design team is led by Living Habitats LLC.

This article was originally published by Fox News and reproduced with permission

Originally published as A $ 120 million highway crossing was built just for animals

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