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World’s Largest Wildlife Crossing to Be Built in California Starting This Month

The evolution of human transportation networks over centuries has notoriously disregarded the welfare of wild animals, and studies proved that it’s one of the biggest factors that can lead to the extinction of certain species. One of these studies, which spanned over two decades, inspired a wonderful project that is finally coming to life this month – the Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing.
The upcoming bridge will allow wild animals in the area to cross safely 6 photos
Mountain Lions Could Be Saved by This Wildlife CrossingWallis Annenberg Wildlife CrossingWallis Annenberg Wildlife CrossingMountain Lions Could Be Saved by This Wildlife CrossingMountain Lions Could Be Saved by This Wildlife Crossing
People being able to circulate better often means that wildlife can’t circulate at all. The U.S. 101 Freeway at Liberty Canyon outside of Los Angeles is one of the busiest commuter routes. It connects the Los Angeles and Ventura Counties and acts as the main access route to and from downtown Los Angeles, with more than 300,000 vehicles passing through it on a daily basis.

At the same time, it literally blocks wild animals from circulating in their natural habitat, which is vital for finding food and for mating. It’s a known fact that millions of wild animals are killed in traffic in the U.S., but in this particular case, it’s even worse because several species, in particular the mountain lion, are in danger of becoming extinct due to this.

The solution is to build a crossing dedicated to wildlife, a bridge that not only allows them to safely cross between the Santa Monica Mountains and the Simi Hills but is also covered with soil and vegetation in order to recreate a natural environment as much as possible.

The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is the one that launched and will complete this unique project, named this way because of the generous contribution of the Annenberg Foundation. It’s unique because it is the first of its kind in California and the largest in the world – crossing over ten freeway lanes, this bridge will be 200-foot-long (61 meters) and 165-foot-wide (50 meters). Also, according to NWF, it’s the first one to be “significantly funded through private donations along with public support.”

Work on this groundbreaking crossing is due to start on Earth Day, April 22, and will hopefully inspire many other lifesaving projects.

 
 
 
 
 

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