Subway planners look ahead

I had the chance to sit in this morning with the subway planning team at Metro. It was the first time the entire team had gathered since Thursday, when the Metro Board of Directors approved the staff recommendation to build the Westside Subway Extension on an alignment mostly along Wilshire Boulevard.

The meeting was basically devoted to getting organized for the vast amount of work ahead. Emphasis on the word “vast.”

First and foremost, the team has immediately started to work on the final environmental impact statement/report for the project. The three big issues to be settled there are the locations of the three westernmost stations: Century City (Avenue of the Stars/Santa Monica Boulevard or Ave. of the Stars/Constellation Boulevard), Westwood/UCLA (Wilshire/Westwood or under Parking Lot 36) and the VA Hospital (north or south of Wilshire).

But in the space of two hours, the team also discussed, among other things: soil conditions under the line, future geologic testing that must occur, aerial photographic surveys of the line, public outreach efforts, nailing down station portal locations, recovering paleontological resources from the area to be impacted by construction, construction staging, working with the Federal Transit Administration on planning the line, utility surveys that must be done, digital terrain modeling, rail operation studies that are needed and the Metro art program that will help decorate the stations.

For the time being, it’s full steam ahead and we’ll try to keep readers as involved in the planning process as is possible. If you have suggestions for our coverage, please leave a comment. You can also keep up with the project on the Westside Subway Extension’s Facebook page.

5 replies

  1. Why isn’t the Metro looking to the future to providing a rapid transit corridor down the 405 during the current billion dollar construction project to add just one freeway lane? What LA needs, in addition to a Westside extension of the Red line, is a north/south line parallel with the 405 from Valancia (past the airport) to the terminus of the Green Line in Redondo Beach. Every exisiting rapid transit/rail line goes downtown but the Westside of the city is in constant gridlock and the 405 corridor will get only worse in the years ahead. A north/south route connecting with good east/west service is essential for future growth and has been totally overlooked.

  2. A “Sepulveda Pass Transit Corridor” project is provided for by Measure R. The measure provides funding to open the line in 2039.

    Obviously, that’s a long time from now, so that’s why Metro is pursuing the 30/10 plan, which will get it open by 2020. Cross your fingers…

    Metro is allegedly working to better define the project right now.

    Project site: http://www.metro.net/projects/sfv-405/

  3. 30/10 Project Scheduling: We can only cross our fingers and say a prayer that the new Congress appreciates the innovative approach in the 30/10 Plan because if it doesn’t the Sepulveda Pass Transit Corridor and the rest wouldn’t be constructed.

    Public Transit is all about money and the Chinese Government committed $800 billion in combined government and private funds to high speed transportation. Compare that to $98 billion for transportation and infrastructure in the U.S. Stimulus Bill and so much is earmarked, little is left for local transportation projects.

    The President proposed additional funding for infrastructure but there is little chance the new Congress will pass any spending bills with the possible exception of defense related spending.

  4. We’ll there no hope then unless we split into NoCal, CenCal & SoCal get 6 senators in there and fight for more money. The US hardly pays for anything based on the amout of money we give to them. Californians want high-speed trains and rail projects and the US wants Blackwater and wars!