A huge transit project such as the Crenshaw/LAX Line — with a $2-billion-plus budget — has the potential to bring economic opportunities along the train’s route, the reason Metro held a Business Opportunities Summit today to ensure local business owners know how they can work with Metro and take advantage of everything the project brings.
More than 300 small, minority- and women-owned businesses, as well as job seekers, attended the summit. They were able to meet with various Metro department heads as well as hear from Metro Board Member Mark Ridley-Thomas, Metro Board Member Jackie Dupont-Walker, Metro CEO Art Leahy, the Crenshaw/LAX Community Leadership Council and Danny Bakewell, the L.A. Sentinel Publisher.
Here’s the press release from Metro:
Metro hosted a Business Opportunity Summit today at the California African American Museum in Exposition Park. The goal was to share work and career opportunities with small businesses and individuals along the alignment so that they can take part in the economic benefits created by construction of the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project.
The Metro Crenshaw/LAX Business Opportunity Summit is a partnership between Metro and the Los Angeles Sentinel Newspapers, including the Crenshaw/LAX Community Leadership Council (CLC).
“Thanks to Measure R, Metro is engaged in one of the nation’s largest public works building programs covering dozens of transit and highway projects,” said Metro Board Chair Diane DuBois. “Learning how to do business with Metro will be a critical step for small, minority and women owned business to participate in the economic benefits these projects are creating.”
“Small business owners are the economic engines of our communities,” said Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors Chairman Mark Ridley-Thomas. “We must empower them and encourage entrepreneurship for all business owners especially minority and women owned businesses. We must harness the economic opportunity that the Crenshaw to LAX transit project will bring to our region. “
The Crenshaw/LAX Transit Corridor Project will serve the Crenshaw Corridor, Inglewood, Westchester and the LAX area with eight stations, a maintenance facility for rail vehicles and park and ride lots. Also included in the project will be construction of traction power substations and the acquisition of rail vehicles and maintenance equipment.
The new rail stations will be Expo/Crenshaw, Crenshaw/Martin Luther King, Crenshaw/Vernon, Crenshaw/Slauson, Florence/West, Florence/La Brea, Florence/Hindry and Aviation/Century.
“Metro is transforming the urban landscape of Los Angeles thanks to all the Measure R funded transit and highway projects,” said Metro CEO Art Leahy. “At the Economic Summit, Metro reached out to small, minority and women owned businesses and individuals to take full advantage of economic opportunities created by these projects today and beyond.”
The summit attracted more than 300 small, minority and women owned businesses, as well as job seekers who were provided information by Metro’s Diversity and Economic Opportunity Department (DEOD), Human Resources and the company that will build the Crenshaw/LAX Transit Project, Walsh/Shea Constructors
In addition, Metro’s Human Resources staff provided basic information, including how to file a job application and what positions are available, from bus operators to professionals. DEOD staff answered questions about certification and procurement for business owners.
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Art of Transit: Walsh/Shea Corridor Constructors, contracted to build the Crenshaw/LAX Line, at the Crenshaw Business Opportunities Summit. Photo via Metro’s Instagram.