UPDATE, 2 PM: Air Force One has just landed at LAX, which means BidenJam is in effect in the City of Angels.
Coming off the plane, the president was greeted Wednesday on the tarmac by Gov. Gavin Newsom, outgoing Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and various family members before jumping on Marine One for the trip into town.
The helicopter is flying to Dodger Stadium in Echo Park, after which Biden will motorcade through the neighborhood, Silver Lake, Los Feliz and into the heart of Hollywood.
To prepare for the presidential commute, streets are shutting down, cars are being towed and blockades are going up all over Hollywood Boulevard around Highland and La Brea as the president heads to the El Capitan for a taping of Jimmy Kimmel Live! POTUS’ first live and in-studio late night appearance since taking office will start filming around 2:40 p.m. PT. After that, Biden is set to head downtown to LA Live and the Microsoft Theater to meet with his fellow heads of state and other delegates for the Summit of the Americas.
You can check out the extensive road closures and other security measures below. The president’s visit with Kimmel will air tonight on ABC.
In the meantime, the Secret Service is unsurprisingly keeping precise details of the Biden’s movements tight to the vest for obvious reasons. it’s a fair bet though to say that if you absolutely don’t have to go to Hollywood or downtown this evening, don’t.
PREVIOUSLY, JUNE 6 PM: The President of Mexico may have dropped out of the Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles this week, but the hosting President of the United States is coming to town for a flurry of fêtes.
A big-ticket fundraiser, a late-night TV sit-down in Hollywood, and some geopolitical arm-twisting are all on Joe Biden’s itinerary once Air Force One lands at LAX on Wednesday at around 1:30 p.m. PT. In POTUS’ first truly full-on visit to the City of Angels since taking office, and with First Lady Dr. Jill Biden in the area too, it means a familiar pre-pandemic steely security net is coming down on L.A. with road closures galore.
Or, put it this way: avoid downtown L.A. for the rest of the week; and LAX today, Wednesday, Friday and when Biden leaves on Saturday at around 10 a.m. PT. With a dance card that also includes an in-studio Jimmy Kimmel appearance by Hollywood fave Biden on June 8 and a deep-pocket $35,000 sponsor ticket fundraiser for the DNC’s Democratic Grassroots Victory Fund at Haim and Cheryl Saban’s pad on June 10, you might want to stay out of Hollywood and Beverly Hills altogether during the latter part of the week.
We’ll update with more information when it is available from the LAPD and the Secret Service, plus whatever specifics emerge for the Jimmy Kimmel Live! sit-down and the Saban shindig. In the meantime, here is the wide-ranging guidance sent out by the Mayor’s office:
Traffic will likely be impacted in the Downtown LA area and around Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) from 10 pm Monday, June 6 through noon Saturday, June 11. The following are operational impacts expected during the Summit.
Passengers traveling to or from Los Angeles International Airport should expect rolling traffic impacts. Departing passengers are encouraged to allow additional time to reach the airport, particularly on Monday, Tuesday and Friday.
In order to avoid traffic congestion and delays in Downtown Los Angeles during the Summit of the Americas, the areas between the 10 and 101 freeways, and west of the 110 should be avoided whenever possible.
Separately, on Thursday, June 9, on Pacific Coast Highway (State Route 1) — from Coastline Drive to the Santa Monica tunnel (McClure Tunnel) — one southbound traffic lane will be dedicated to emergency vehicles from noon to 10 pm.
From 10 pm on Monday, June 6 through noon on Saturday, June 11, commuters should avoid the following access points to Downtown:
Connector ramps from the east and westbound 10 Freeway to the 110 Freeway North
The 110 Freeway northbound exits into Downtown LA, to include Pico Boulevard, 9th Street, 6th Street, 4th Street, and 3rd Street
The 110 Freeway southbound exits for 6th Street and Wilshire Boulevard
Figueroa Street, north and southbound traffic, between Washington Boulevard and 3rd Street
Pico Boulevard, east and westbound traffic, between Union Avenue and Grand Avenue
7th Street, east and westbound traffic, between Bixel Street and Flower Street
Wilshire Boulevard, east and westbound traffic, between Bixel Street and Flower Street
There are several other roads in Downtown Los Angeles that will be intermittently closed to traffic due to the Summit.
To access the Downtown area, motorists should use the following freeway exits:
Traveling westbound on the 10 Freeway, exit 16A Santa Fe, 15B Alameda Street, 15A Central Ave, 14B San Pedro Street, 14A Convention Center.
Traveling eastbound on the 10 Freeway, exit Convention Center/Grand Avenue/Olive Street, 14A Maple Avenue, 14B San Pedro Street, 15A Central Avenue, 15B Alameda Street, 16A Santa Fe Avenue.
Traveling Northbound on the 110 Freeway, exit 20B 37th Street and Exposition Boulevard, 20C Adams Boulevard, or transition onto either the 10 or 101 Freeways east or westbound.
Businesses within these designated streets will remain open and foot traffic, private bicycles, etc. will be permitted as well.
Caltrans District 7, which oversees Los Angeles freeways, expects lane and ramp closures in the downtown area, especially those leading to and away from the Los Angeles Convention Center.
The Los Angeles Department of Transportation anticipates no suspended or canceled routes during the Summit week. However, detours are likely for DASH routes A, B, E, and F as well as Commuter Express lines 409, 419, 422, 423, 431, 437, 438, 439, 448, 534, and the Union Station/Bunker Hill shuttle and some stops will be temporarily closed. More specifics will be available throughout the summit.
Besides the potential gridlock of traffic, the Summit and the security surrounding it will put a dent in production all across the home of Hollywood this week, according to the county permit issuing agency.
“City officials have informed FilmLA that the breadth of Summit event, in terms of the number of venues used and level of security required, make it almost certain that filming requests will not be approved for Downtown during the proceedings,” FilmLA say. “Posted parking, lane closures and full street closures for filming will specifically not be allowed.”
“Numerous lane and full street closures for the Summit are under coordination and City personnel, including LAPD, will be highly engaged with managing traffic flow and ensuring public safety,” the non-profit organization added. “Permitted and non-permitted protest activity is also possible in the Civic Center and around Summit venues,” FilmLA went on to say. “Requests for permits to film elsewhere in the City – owing to high resource demands on LAPD and other departments – could also see slower processing time during the Summit. Filmmakers are encouraged to file applications with FilmLA early, giving more than the usual three to five business days of lead time whenever possible.”
Although Mexico’s Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Bolivia’s Luis Arce are staying home because the leaders of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela weren’t invited to the U.S.-hosted regional summit, the multi-national conference kicks off today downtown. Taking point for the administration’s Central America migration policy, or lack there of, Vice President Kamala Harris will be participating in the summit; Harris and Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff have been at their West L.A. home all weekend already. The former California senator and Attorney General has an event at DTLA’s Sheraton Grand Hotel this afternoon and is expected to have center stage and side meetings with arriving dignitaries over the next few days.
However, to avoid being caught in the leg-hold trap of a very close L.A. mayoral primary race between Rep. Karen Bass (CA-D) and billionaire The Grove developer Rick Caruso, Biden won’t actually show up in Los Angeles until Wednesday. A political foster parent to scandal-hobbled outgoing L.A. mayor and stymied Ambassador to India nominee Eric Garcetti, Biden was said to have had Bass high up on his list of potential VPs back in 2020.
Outside of the turmoil of local politics in America’s second-largest city, First Lady Jill Biden will arrive a day earlier than POTUS to deliver the keynote address at the Los Angeles City College commencement ceremony. The visit by the Bidens could prove a bit of a family affair too: Fox News piñata and First Son Hunter Biden lives in Malibu and will undoubtedly be spending time with his parents while they are in the neighborhood.
BTW – if you are wondering where the term “BidenJam” came from, Deadline coined it back during Barack Obama’s second term for whenever extensive road closures would go into effect when then-VP Biden would come to L.A. for fundraisers, award shows and official business. The traffic-snarling Los Angeles visits by the much visiting 44th POTUS were referred to as “Obamageddon.”
The White House was not pleased with either designation, we are told.
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