I’ll be touring the project next week — I’m looking forward to seeing all the work done. The project is about half complete and is forecast for an early 2016 opening at this point. The project also includes a large maintenance campus in Monrovia for light rail vehicles — it’s the large construction site just west of the Home Depot on the south side of the 210 freeway
The Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project this week began construction activities along the 8.5-mile alignment that includes old railroad track demolition, building demolition and tree removal and pruning.
The contractor Walsh/Shea Corridor Constructor (WSCC) began removing old railroad tracks at two locations: Florence Avenue between Crenshaw Boulevard and Manchester Avenue and Aviation Boulevard between Manchester Avenue and Imperial Highway.
The work will be done between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and will last for the next four months. No traffic impacts are expected since this will be done in Metro’s right-of-way.
The demolition of buildings at the northeast corner of Crenshaw Boulevard and Rodeo Road will have the same work schedule but is expected to be completed in two weeks. At the same location trees will be removed beginning Thursday, Feb. 6. This is expected to take only two days and will have the same work schedule. This location will be used as a construction yard and will ultimately be the location of a future underground station.
In addition, tree pruning will take place at four locations along Crenshaw Boulevard: between Exposition Boulevard and Rodeo Road, between Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Stocker Street both sides of Crenshaw Boulevard and both sides between 43rd Place and 43rd Street.
The last location will be the center island at Crenshaw and 48th Street.
From this afternoon’s ribbon cutting. Photo: Metro
Earlier today, the City of El Segundo held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Measure R Maple Avenue highway project. The project was fully funded by Measure R to the tune of $2.5 million and came in $350,000 under budget. The project improves access to the I-105 from Sepulveda Blvd. and relieves congestion at the intersection of Sepulveda and Imperial for commuters and residents.
This is the first ribbon-cutting for a Measure R project in the South Bay, the the South Bay Cities Council of Governments is looking forward to the completion of more highway improvements in South Bay cities that have been funded by Measure R.
First, the caveat: The Metro Board has not — emphasis on the HAS NOT part — decided to take a ballot measure to Los Angeles County voters.
That said, in recent months, both the Board as a whole and individual members have said they want to explore the idea of taking a ballot measure to voters in 2014 or 2016. Furthermore, the Board has instructed Metro to ask local cities what kind of transportation projects that may want funded in such a measure.
As the above Metro staff report explains, there are still many decisions to be made.
Perhaps the most significant: should a ballot measure seek an extension of Measure R to accelerate projects? Or should it perhaps be a new sales tax to provide more money for some Measure R projects and perhaps pay for some new ones?
Some quick background. The Measure R half-cent sales tax increase was approved by 68 percent of county voters in Nov. 2008. The Measure R expenditure plan spread money around to many transit and road projects across the county.
In some cases, Measure R provides most of the money needed to build a project — a good example is the second phase of the Expo Line. In other cases, Measure R only provides partial funding and not enough money for more expensive project alternatives and segments.
Metro CEO Art Leahy informed Metro staff and Board today that the agency has officially sent in its application for federal New Starts funding for the Regional Connector project to the Federal Transit Administration.
It’s a first step in the process of obtaining a federal contribution for the 1.9-mile underground light rail project to connect the Blue, Gold and Expo Lines in downtown L.A. The full funding grant application for the Purple Line Extension project is planned next.
Here’s the update from CEO Leahy:
Correspondence to FTA – Regional Connector Full Funding Grant Agreement
This morning, I transmitted our Full Funding Grant Agreement (FFGA) application for the Regional Connector to the Federal Transit Administration’s (FTA) Regional Administrator Leslie Rogers. Over the coming months, the FFGA for the Regional Connector will be fully reviewed and considered by the FTA and the relevant congressional committees. The FFGA for the Regional Connector includes a federal New Starts commitment of $670 million. I would like to personally express my appreciation to FTA Administrator Peter Rogoff and his professional staff in Washington, DC and at the FTA’s regional office in San Francisco and local office in Los Angeles for their exceptional efforts in working with our agency’s staff on this planned transit project. For your review, please find my letter to FTA Regional Administrator Leslie Rogers.
Metro advisory group meeting for Purple Line Extension Project.
Metro will be holding its next advisory group meeting for the first segment of the Metro Purple Line Extension Project on Tuesday, October 29, 2013. Members of the public are invited to observe the advisory group meeting as local stakeholders discuss construction-related issues for the first nearly four-mile subway segment between Wilshire/Western and La Cienega. Construction is expected to begin next year.
During the meeting, the Metro project team will provide updates on the project’s status, activities and anticipated construction schedule.
Meeting details are as follows:
Tuesday, October 29, 2013 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Petersen Automotive Museum
6060 Wilshire Blvd – 4th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90036
This location is served by Metro lines 20, 720, 217, 780. Validated parking is available in the structure behind the museum. Motorists should enter the parking structure from Fairfax and bring their parking ticket with them.
The advisory group consists of individuals representing the residents, businesses, property owners and key institutions around the La Brea, Fairfax and La Cienega stations. City staff are also been invited to attend the meeting, listen to the discussion and answer questions.
The Measure R Independent Oversight Committee this morning approved Metro’s financing plan aimed at securing $160 million in federal Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation (TIFIA) loans for the Regional Connector project.
The committee, which is charged with reviewing the cost-effectiveness of financing Measure R projects, determined this type of federal loan by leveraging Measure R funds would provide a very low interest rate and flexible repayment terms. The TIFIA loan would help supplement needed funding to build the approximately two-mile, $1.399 billion underground light rail project that would connect the Metro Blue, Gold and Expo Lines and streamline rail travel through downtown Los Angeles.
Metro’s treasurer reported that the agency seeks to lock in a low interest rate under the current market environment. Actual loan draws may be deferred for up to five years after the loan is executed, with interest accruing only as proceeds are used and with no change in the original interest rate.
A similar TIFIA loan financing recommendation for the Purple Line Extension project is expected to come before the committee next spring.
The America Fast Forward provision in the most recent multi-year federal transportation bill enhanced the TIFIA program last year, making it possible for Metro to take advantage of low-cost financing with greater flexibility than is available in the public credit markets. Metro plans to seek up to $3.5 billion in these type of loans to build road and transit projects. Read earlier Source post on the TIFIA prgram here.
The committee’s finding will now be considered by the full Metro Board at its Oct. 24 meeting. See committee item here.
Metro Highway Program Executive Officer Lan Saadatnejadi speaks at the Lindero Canyon/101 bridge project groundbreaking. Photo: Paul Gonzales/Metro
The City of Westlake Village held a groundbreaking ceremony this morning for the Lindero Canyon/101 Freeway bridge project. When the project is completed, the Lindero Canyon Road/101 bridge will feature an additional travel lane in each direction of traffic and a series of unique aesthetic improvements. Funding for this project is provided by Measure R.
“Westlake Village has been a strong partner with Metro to quickly and effectively move forward congestion relief projects like the Lindero Canyon Bridge Widening Project using the Measure R funds collected in Los Angeles County,” said Metro’s Executive Director of Highway Project Delivery Doug Failing. “We want all of our local partners to be this effective in providing congestion relief for their residents.”
The City of Westlake Village is about to begin construction on the Lindero Canyon/101 Freeway bridge project. The highway operations improvement project is funded by Measure R.
Here’s the full press release from the City of Westlake Village with more details:
The City of Westlake Village is about to begin construction on the Lindero Canyon/101 Freeway bridge project. The project is scheduled to commence on September 16. In addition to sending notification letters to local residents and businesses, the City will be placing electronic message board signs near the construction area prior to work commencing. This transportation improvement project is being funded by Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) Measure R Program for highway operations improvements.
It is envisioned that construction will be performed in three different phases. All construction work will take place behind temporary concrete barriers for the safety of both the public and construction workers. It is anticipated that two lanes of travel in each direction will remain open throughout most of the construction. However, there will be short periods of time when only one travel lane will be open. A safe pedestrian route will also be available on one side of the bridge, and pedestrians should look for signage as a guide during each of the three construction phases.
When this project is completed, the Lindero Canyon Road/101 bridge will feature an additional travel lane in each direction of traffic and a series of unique aesthetic improvements. Residents are encouraged to contact City Engineer, John Knipe at 818-706-1613 for further information or to submit questions to the City via CityCare on the City website www.wlv.org. In addition, residents may sign-up to receive up-to-date information on the project. Updates will include progress reports, achievement of major milestones, and traffic information, and will be sent out via e-mail or text message. To sign-up for this free service, visit http://www.wlv.org and click on the Lindero Canyon/101 Freeway Bridge Project icon on the left side of the homepage.
Today Metro released its review of a Beverly Hills Unified School District consultant memo that challenged the agency’s geotechnical rationale for choosing the Constellation site for the Purple Line Extension ’s Century City station.
The review, sent to Metro’s Board of Directors today, essentially says that nothing in the consultant memo changes the agency’s recommendations.
July 9 Update: Metro has revised its review with additional details. The updated version of this Board report is below with additions in bold.