The Board took action on two other notable items on Thursday:
•The Board approved an item to help purchase 20 new rail cars for Metrolink with “crash energy management” technology that should help prevent fatalities in the event of a crash. The cars would be purchased as part of an order for 117 new rail cars made by Hyundai Rotem at a cost between $13 million and $16 million. Metro is going to negotiate an agreement with Metrolink to finance the purchase and then work with the four other counties that help fund Metrolink for them to provide their share of the price.
•The Board also approved a “Grade Safety Crossing Policy” by Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, who said the purpose of the policy was to include consideration of public safety and future economic development when deciding which crossings are at street level and which are grade separated by tunnel or bridge. Metro Deputy CEO Paul Taylor told the Board of Directors that the new policy is a “difference in emphasis, not substance.”
•And below is a couple of minutes of video of the Board of Directors’ vote on approving the alignment for the Westside Subway Extension. The video opens with Glendale Mayor Ara Najarian explaining why he’s voting for the subway — because it’s a tunnel he believes in, unlike the under-study tunnel for the 710 freeway gap. He is followed by Supervisor Don Knabe, who is the Metro Board Chairman, taking the vote.