Motorists in Southern California can now travel along the President Barack H. Obama Highway. A section of California's 134 Freeway has been named for the 44th President of the USA.
California State Senator Anthony J. Portantino (D - La Cañada Flintridge) and Congressman Jimmy Gomez introduced the legislation in 2017 which renamed the highway from State Route 2 in Glendale to Interstate 210 in Pasadena.
“This is an exciting day for Southern California and it showcases our deep respect and appreciation for President Obama," Sen. Portantino said.
"The President has often mentioned his fond memories of living in Pasadena and attending Occidental College, so it was very appropriate to name the portion of the freeway he travelled after him.
"Our community came together to make this happen. It is an honor to be in a position to have helped facilitate this wonderful symbol of our collective respect for the grace and dignity embodied by our 44th President."
Former President Obama attended Occidental College from 1979 to 1981 and lived in Pasadena during his sophomore year. His attendance at Occidental College influenced his political trajectory and his legacy as president of the United States from 2008-2016.
Portantino said that people across the country had offered to pay for the sign. However he chose to keep it local and received an "overwhelming" response from the community.
“So many generous people can share in the accomplishment of this appropriate recognition of an inspiring, positive leader," he said.
"I am very grateful to Caltrans for its rapid response to our community’s generosity by installing the signs before Christmas.
"What a great way to bring in 2019. I hope to have a formal unveiling and program in the New Year to properly commemorate the President and our new freeway.”